'It could take years to tackle Kinahan gang,' says Kenny
Published 26/05/2016 | 02:30
Taoiseach Enda Kenny has indicated it could take years to solve the gangland crisis in Dublin city centre.
Mr Kenny told the Dáil the murders are being ordered from abroad and were "as much about sending signals internationally about the so-called status of criminal gangs as it is about power and money and misery here".
He said "pleadings" had failed to work with the McCarthy-Dundon gangs, 'The General' and the Gilligan gang in the past and would not work with the Kinahans.
"These gangland crimes and killings, including the orders and attempts to kill, are not being done on a whim or decided in the corner of some kitchen in inner-city Dublin. They are being directed from international sources.
"There needs to be a far greater connection and far more vigilant operation with international police forces and intelligence in respect of such gangs," Mr Kenny said.
The Taoiseach insisted gardaí would get the resources to build intelligence and "take these people off the streets and put them behind bars".
"Those who are sent to carry out or attempt killings for, in some cases, very small sums are really signals from those who live with the trappings and shallowness of wealth abroad and do their dirty business from abroad," he said.
Speaking ahead of a meeting with Garda Commissioner Nóirín O'Sullivan, Mr Kenny said all necessary resources would be made available to gardaí, but added: "It took years to deal with the McCarthy Dundon gang. It took years to deal with Gilligan. It took years to deal with The General."
The Dáil heard more than 1,000 lines of inquiry are being pursued in relation to the murders and widespread searches have been carried out.
"These gangs are intent on retaliatory killings in Dublin. My concern is for the people living in these areas, the communities and their children in particular," Mr Kenny said.
Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin claimed the Government has given the impression that the State "is almost powerless to stop this and turn the tide against the criminal gangs and the drug overlords controlling parts of our city and country".
"I put it to the Taoiseach that there is a need for the State to really get into the face of these criminals, assert who is in charge of our country and ensure that crime does not pay."
Mr Martin called for anti-gangland laws introduced in 2009 to be used to their full extent.
"The Garda and the full armoury of the State need to meet these criminals head on and be constantly in their face in terms of ensuring they do not reign with the apparent ease with which they do at the moment when in broad daylight they can run up and murder people in cold blood," he said.
Labour Party leader Brendan Howlin called for a new multi-agency task force to help the inner-city community.
"It should engage with key stakeholders in the community to ensure there is a comprehensive and broad-based approach to tackling gangland crime.
"There needs to be a focus on addressing issues of deprivation, education and healthcare. It must also work with our European partners to combat the transnational nature of modern day criminal activity," he said.
Dublin Central TD Maureen O'Sullivan described the Hutch family as "a typical inner city family and a large extended family".
"I'd just make the point that many of them, the majority, have had no criminal involvement and some of them are terrified at what is happening and they could be next."