WATCH: 'Hole in the wall' thief flees empty-handed as salon burgled 14th time
Gardai are following a definite line of enquiry in relation to this bungling burglar who had to use his mobile phone for instructions when he kicked and hacked his way into a hairdressing salon by making a hole in the wall.
The raider, who is believed to be aged in his 20s, escaped empty-handed after the bizarre burglary which happened at the House of LA hairdressers in Athy, Co Kildare, in the early hours of last Thursday morning.
This was the 14th time that the business has been burgled since 2008. Owner Des Grufferty estimates the raids have cost him €130,000 in relocation fees and damage repairs.
"We had to spend over €3,000 to get the damage that was caused in this incident last week to be repaired. CCTV shows it all happened in the space of one minute and three seconds," Mr Grufferty told the Herald.
"We are just fed up at this stage. It has happened so often. There is a huge problem in Co Kildare with a lack of garda resources, these criminals feel that they can do what they like," he said.
"Figures indicate that these criminals have only a 12pc chance of getting caught in Co Kildare. It's so frustrating for us when we are trying to run a business in which we employ 12 full-time staff," he added.
The raider at the hairdressing salon failed to get any cash because the cash box from the till was empty.
The hole in the wall thug is not linked to a gang of organised Romanian criminals who were involved in a spate of thefts by entering businesses through their roofs last year.
Gardai say there has been a decline in the activities of 'The Hole in the Roof' gang after three suspects were arrested in a joint operation between gardai in the midlands and south east.
The Romanian nationals had been based in a Co Kildare town, and were using it as a base to target businesses across the country.
They are believed to have fled the country after their arrests.