Sunday 27 May 2018

Gardai probe arson attack at home of prison officer

Stock picture
Stock picture
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

GARDAÍ are investigating an arson attack outside the home of a Cork prison officer.

The Prison Service official, who lives in the Blarney area, had his car targeted in an apparent petrol bomb attack in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The car was parked outside the home where he resides with his wife.

The vehicle was badly damaged in the blaze before it could be extinguished.

However, no one was hurt and no damage was caused to the property involved.

It is understood that another person in the area saw two young men running from the scene at around the same time.

The incident occurred a number of years after the homes of Prison Service officials and Gardaí were attacked in the same general area.

It is unclear if there is any link between this incident and those historic attacks.

Gardaí are now investigating the matter and one of the theories being examined is whether the attack is linked to a grudge someone may have against the officer involved in relation to his work.

Officers are checking properties in the area to see if anyone else spotted suspicious activity near the officer's home over recent days.

Any CCTV security cameras in the area will also be checked to see if any caught the men running from the scene on footage.

The Prison Officers Association said it is "deeply concerned" about the attack.

"Our thoughts at this time are very much with the prison officers involved and their families. We will do all we possibly can to support them after such a traumatic event," said Jim Mitchell, Deputy General Secretary.

"The POA has consistently raised the issue of attacks on prison officers and their property both inside and outside of prisons over years. We again call on the Minister and the Prison Service to review all such events and do  all possible prevent such vicious attacks into the future."

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