Gardai hunt two gangs after botched ATM raids
GARDAI do not believe there is any link between two botched ATM thefts which happened at almost the same time in separate towns.
The raiders in both cases left empty-handed after being disturbed while attempting to make away with bank machines, which they hoped were laden with holiday weekend cash.
Now gardai are hunting for two separate gangs who were responsible for the attempted thefts in Bagenalstown, Co Carlow, and Carrigaline, Co Cork.
"We're not making any link at all between the two incidents," a garda spokesperson said last night.
"They were both around the same time and the two locations are too far apart for them to have been linked. We're treating them as separate incidents."
The first gang of raiders tried to take the cash machine from the Maxol petrol station in Shannonpark, Carrigaline, at 4am on Saturday morning. However, they failed in their efforts and the ATM machine remained intact.
It is understood the gang may have been disturbed when they were carrying out the robbery. A digger, which is believed to have been stolen, was abandoned at the scene.
Just 90 minutes later, a gang of at least four men was responsible for damaging a Bank of Ireland branch and ramming a patrol car in Bagenalstown.
The masked raiders caused "substantial damage" to the bank branch, while prising the ATM out of the building on the town's Kilree Street.
However, they were disturbed during the incident and the gardai were quickly alerted and arrived on the scene.
The thieves made their escape in a silver Audi A3, ramming the garda car in the process. There were no injuries.
A low-loader and a digger also used by the gang were taken from an industrial estate in Bagenalstown. Gardai are appealing to the public for information.