A GANG of thieves flooded part of a home in Finuge on Wednesday to get their hands on less than €40 worth of copper piping in what was one of a number of criminal raids on homes in the area.
Houses in Finuge and Lixnaw were hit during Wednesday night in a spate of crimes that has led to increased security fears in the ordinarily peaceful parish.
The copper piping was stolen from what gardaí described as a boiler room next to a home in Finuge. The gang simply cut through the pipes, leaving the room to flood and making their escape.
Meanwhile, a chainsaw was stolen on the same night from the house next door when the gang broke into a shed. Occupants of both houses were at home at the time but only noticed the damage later.
A consaw was stolen from a car at a building site in Lixnaw later that night and thieves also made off with a set of metal sockets after gaining entry to an unlocked shed at the rear of a home, also in Lixnaw.
Gardaí believe the same gang was responsible for all the crimes in Finuge and Lixnaw on the night - the latest in what appears to be an increasing surge in crime in rural communities.
One of the leads gardaí are currently investigating was the presence of a small, green car that was seen driving in a suspicious manner in the area on the night. Anyone who might have noticed anything unusual in either Finuge or Lixnaw on the night is asked to contact gardaí in Listowel.