PSNI join gardai in Tallaght raids after sick North break-in
Gardai and the PSNI raided the Dublin homes of a burglary gang suspected of a violent break-in that left an 83-year-old woman fighting for her life in the North.
In a rare joint operation, gardai in Tallaght and officers from the Police Service of Northern Ireland carried out the dawn raids yesterday.
Three homes were raided in the Fortunestown area and officers seized phones and clothes.
No arrests were made in the operation, which sources said was targeting one of the country's most prolific Traveller burglary gangs.
Elderly victim Pat Davidson was left with a fractured skull, spine and pelvis after falling from a first-floor window when the gang broke into her home in Aughnacloy, Co Tyrone.
She is still fighting for her life following the attack last Tuesday week.
Three searches were carried out in the Ardmore area of Tallaght yesterday.
Two Traveller families, well-known for their involvement in burglaries, were targeted by gardai and police officers. No arrests were made.
The Herald previously revealed that gardai seized a well-known Tallaght criminal's Golf Mk 4 car after an unrelated chase in Newbridge, Co Kildare, on Wednesday last week, was linked to the break-in at Ms Davidson's home.
They later found this car was detected on Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras near the property, shortly before the break-in the day before.
The criminal was not targeted in yesterday's raids, but it is understood he is closely linked to those whose homes were searched.
The PSNI has been liaising with gardai about the vehicle. It released details of two other cars detected in the area with false number plates, which could be linked to the burglary.
The Tallaght criminal, who is not a Traveller but works closely with organised Traveller burglary gangs in Dublin, was not in the car when it was seized last Wednesday.
A criminal associate of his was driving, but security sources said it belongs to the criminal, who is in his 20s. He imported it from the UK, where it was reported stolen in November.
Ms Davidson was placed in an induced coma and continues to be treated in hospital following the horrifying break-in.
A young mother said she found the pensioner screaming in agony while lying below an open upstairs window.
"Two people walking past said they'd seen four men jumping over the wall into the car, so we knew something bad had happened," said Cody Morr-ison (21).
"I looked round the house and saw a window had been jacked open, so I called out to see if anyone was there.
"We just heard the voice saying, 'I'm here'.
"She was very shaken. I went round to her and found her. She was very afraid."
The suspects made off in a black car in the direction of Moore Street. Detectives are linking the raid to three other burglaries, also near the border, on Tuesday.