Dempsey's office vandalised
Published 23/11/2010 | 14:29
The constituency office of a senior Irish minister was targeted by vandals overnight.
Several windows were smashed and the word "TRATIORS" was written with red spray paint across the front of the premises of Transport Minister Noel Dempsey.
Gardai are investigating the criminal damage on the property in Trim, Co Meath, which happened in the early hours of this morning.
A spokeswoman for Mr Dempsey said the incident will not stop the Fianna Fail minister carrying out his work.
"This is a local office for local people and Minister Dempsey will continue to serve local people undeterred," she said.
"This was an attack on the decent local people who have loyally supported him over the years.
"The gardai are investigating this act of vandalism."
Government ministers have faced increased pressure from hostile protesters as the Cabinet moves to bring in swingeing cuts and tax hikes in a four-year €15bn savings plan and a €6bn budget.
Earlier this month a student protest was marred with violence when up to 50 people occupied the Department of Finance.
Bricks, bottles, eggs and placards were hurled at gardai in riot gear and on horseback as several hundred people broke off from the main protest.
The Union of Students of Ireland (USI), distanced itself from the trouble and accused militant groups of hijacking the rally.
Two days earlier, red paint was poured over Health Minister Mary Harney as she turned the sod for a new mental health facility in west Dublin. A councillor was arrested and questioned over the incident.
Elsewhere the front gates of the Irish parliament were blocked by a cement truck in September as politicians returned after their lengthy summer recess. The words "Toxic Bank Anglo" were written in red letters along the barrel of the truck.
A 41-year-old man has been charged with criminal damage.