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Sunday 24 June 2018

'Gangsters with grudge' sent 'elaborate' bomb in vacuum cleaner box to social worker

Stock picture
Stock picture

Ken Foy

GARDAÍ are investigating after an explosive hidden in a vacuum cleaner box was sent to a social worker.

A threatening note was attached to the “highly complex” device believed to be linked to the respected woman’s work.

The package contained fireworks, a detonation system and wiring.

Sources said gardaí and Army experts have rarely seen such an elaborate bomb.

A Dublin-based criminal gang have been identified as the chief suspects for the shocking incident six weeks ago.

As part of their investigation, gardaí have followed a number of different leads and carried out a huge trawl of CCTV footage in Dublin as well as a number of midlands towns.

“As part of her work as a senior social worker, this woman has had to interface with criminality as part of her job,” a source said.

“What seems to have occurred is that a Dublin-based criminal gang had a deep grudge against this lady because of her diligent work in a particular case.

“The bomb that was sent to her was viable and complex and definitely had the potential to cause serious injury and even death.”

After the bomb was delivered to the social worker’s place of work on November 16, she then placed it in the boot of her car and drove for over half-an-hour to an event, which was attended by a large group of children, in a neighbouring county.

It was only when she arrived at this event that she gave the vacuum cleaner box a further examination.

It is understood she noticed wiring on the package and became suspicious.

She then placed it on the ground at the venue’s car park. Gardaí were contacted. They arrived and inspected it, then advised everyone to evacuate, including dozens of young children.

The Army bomb disposal team was called to the car park, where they spent about an hour examining the device before declaring it viable and carrying out a controlled explosion.

A massive investigation involving dozens of officers has been ongoing for around six weeks and sources say that detectives have made “significant progress”.

“There are few criminal groupings in this country who would have the know-how to make a device like what was seized,” they said.

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