Boy (14) handcuffed with dad in failed tiger kidnap
GARDAI had to use bolt cutters to rescue a 14-year-old boy who was handcuffed with his father during a failed tiger kidnap attempt.
Last night, detectives were hunting up to seven members of the armed gang involved in the raid in Dublin.
Their target was a senior manager of the major security firm Chubb Ireland and the gang had intended to take some of his family captive while forcing the man to hand over a large amount of cash from his company's vaults.
Last night, the man, his wife and three children, ranging from 14 to five years, were recovering from the traumatic experience in which one of the raiders put a gun to the target's head and threatened all of the family.
Their ordeal began at 6.20pm on Sunday when two men banged on the front door of their home at Windmill Crescent in the south Dublin suburb of Crumlin.
The Chubb manager opened the door and was bundled inside. Following a scuffle in the hallway, they clamped handcuffs on the man and his 14-year-old son. Two more members of the gang then pushed their way into the house and some of them ran upstairs to confront the man's wife and his daughters, aged 10 and five.
They shouted abuse at the family and asked them if they had security alarms in the house.
While they searched the house, a passer-by noticed some of the gang storming the front entrance and alerted the gardai.
As local patrol cars and armed detectives from the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation sped to the scene and ran up the driveway, the raiders fled through the rear and jumped over a wall into waste ground nearby.
Gardai said the gang members were armed with two pistols and a revolver and believe they made their getaway in a silver Nissan 4x4, which had been seen in the area earlier.
As officers ran after the raiders, the Chubb manager warned them that they were armed.
The 4x4 was found on fire less than half a mile away at Hughes Road South during a garda search of the area and a Dublin fire brigade unit was called out to deal with the blaze.
An examination of the burnt vehicle unearthed a revolver, which was taken away to the Garda Technical Bureau in the Phoenix Park for ballistic tests.
The Chubb manager and his son were unable to be set free until gardai arrived with a set of bolt cutters.
Officers said last night they were satisfied that a tiger raid was being planned by the gang and that up to seven people were involved in the operation.
Nobody was injured in the incident but gardai said all of the family had been badly shaken by their ordeal.
A search for the gang was extended throughout the capital yesterday as gardai sought information about the likely identity of the thugs involved.
Detectives are trying to establish if there is any link between this foiled attempt and other tiger raids in the capital recently, including a €300,000 haul from Allied Irish Banks in September when a branch manager and his wife were held captive overnight at their home in Templeogue.
Last night, gardai appealed to witnesses who may have spotted men acting suspiciously at either Windmill Crescent shortly after 6pm on Sunday or later at Hughes Road South to contact them at Crumlin station on 01 6666200, or the confidential line at 1800 666111.