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Sunday 24 September 2017

Local gang are prime suspects for pipebomb attack on family

Shattered glass in the doorway at the house, after a pipe bomb exploded.
Shattered glass in the doorway at the house, after a pipe bomb exploded.

Alan O’Keeffe and Ken Foy

Gardai are investigating if a notorious local gang are responsible for a bomb attack in north Dublin which could have caused serious injury.

The explosion at the house traumatised a family and terrified neighbours.

The blast badly damaged the front door of the family home in Coolock in the late-night attack.

Neighbours today said the occupants of the house were in “a terrible state” following the shocking attack.

“This is just the latest pipe-bomb attack linked to this gang in the locality. Tensions are very high in the Coolock area at the moment,” said a senior source.

Details of the explosion came as the Army bomb disposal unit was called out to deal with a suspicious device in the Cowper Downs area of Rathmines area of the capital shortly after 10am today.

Gardai requested the army's assistance this morning and say that the south Dublin device is not linked to last night's explosion in Coolock.

This morning’s device was found on a street and, at the time of going to print, army experts had not yet established if it was viable or not.

Last night’s pipebomb exploded around 11pm at the house in Ferrycarrig Road, shattering the glass of the front door and spraying the hallway with fragments of broken glass.

“Someone could have been killed – it was like Vietnam. Children could have been badly hurt,” said a 48-year-old neighbour. “The couple living in the house were hysterical. It was lucky no one was in the hall because they would have been killed,” he said.

forensics

Gardai remained on duty today at the house, awaiting the arrival of a forensics team.

Neighbours condemned the attack and said the family had suffered vandalism attacks in the recent past, having a front window broken and a parked car having its windows broken on two occasions.

“Whoever did this last night are animals, that's all they are,” said the irate neighbour.

A local woman said: “It was a very, very bad bang. My family were watching television when we heard what sounded like a gas explosion. We jumped up and started to panic. We ran outside and we could hear the people screaming outside.

“The woman was terrified. We kept thinking it was gas until someone said that a pipebomb was thrown at the house. The bang was so loud there were people coming from other streets around the place. We feel terrified ourselves after this,” said the mother of six.

Neighbours said the couple living in the damaged home have grown-up sons and a number of grandchildren.

The army bomb disposal team were not called out to the scene in Coolock by gardai to carry out a post-blast analysis.

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