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Slash-hook war breaks out after woman's burial

OVER 30 gardai had to be called as armed back-up after a bloody slash-hook battle at a funeral.

The officers were deployed as Travellers clashed just seconds after a young woman was buried at Bohernabreena Cemetery, Tallaght, last Wednesday.

A man was stabbed in the leg with a pitchfork during the trouble, which broke out in broad daylight, while others were treated for lacerations.

A man in his 20s was later arrested and charged with public order offences.

There was a garda presence at the funeral, as a large crowd was expected, but, according to sources, the situation got out of control.

The funeral was that of a young woman from the Belgard area of Tallaght.

A source told the Herald that people had been drinking outside St Martin's Church, Aylesbury, in Tallaght.

"As soon as the body was in the ground, the violence erupted," the source said.

They added that a number of people had stocked up on hammers and hatchets, while another man had turned up in a jeep with more weapons in the back.

"At one stage a woman tried to pull him from a jeep and he started to drive and dragged her by the vehicle for about 20 metres. It was like a football riot."





Lacerations

It is understood a number of those involved in the incident received injuries and lacerations.

Residents reported marked and unmarked garda cars, riot vans and the garda helicopter in the area at around 3.15pm on Wednesday afternoon.

A garda spokesperson told the Herald that there were no reported injuries to officers during the disturbance.

Tallaght has already seen serious -- but unrelated -- Traveller violence this year.

A Traveller was shot in the head during a violent car chase at the end of January.

A young man was shot in the head during a chase on Cheeverstown Road, Tallaght, on January 28.

The victim of the shooting was taken to Tallaght Hospital at around 7.30pm on January 28.

He was transferred to Beaumont Hospital but left with a bullet still lodged in his skull.

The victim's father later told the Herald that his sons recognised their attackers but the assailants have gone into hiding.

The father, who lives in England, claimed the Traveller family, which is well-known to gardai, had also beaten his sons with bottles in the past.

The incidents are not believed to be linked.

hnews@herald.ie