Monday 21 May 2018

'It's like stuff you see on TV' - Armed raiders storm bingo hall wearing halloween masks

Let's Bingo Hall in Dundalk - Picture: Google Maps
Let's Bingo Hall in Dundalk - Picture: Google Maps

Martin Grant & Amy Molloy

Armed raiders have stormed into a bingo hall in Dundalk on Wednesday night, robbing an unknown sum of cash.

The terrifying incident occurred shortly after 9pm this evening in the popular 'Let's Bingo' hall in the border town.

Four men wearing Halloween masks armed with hammers and baseball bats stormed the hall and demanded staff to hand over money, while other thugs took money from the arcade.

It is not yet known if any of the raiders had a firearm.

A source said one of the violent raiders shouted at the crowd and demanded everybody to be quiet. understands the raiders then fled in a waiting car. The bingo hall is very close to the border and a slip road to the M1 motorway.

Up to 100 people were in the bingo hall at the time of the vicious raid - including many elderly people.

Several women were visibly upset and left in tears, whilst another woman briefly passed-out.

Sources believe the raiders were very familiar with the layout of the bingo hall.

"They came in and knew exactly where they could get the money... it was all over within six minutes.

"It's just terrifying, it's like stuff you see on TV."

David Bell, Operations Manager told “It’s a shocking event. It’s mentally scarring. Some of the staff were a little bit traumatised, as were some of the customers.

“Nobody was hurt because the staff handed over the money as they were trained to do.

“The people who did it seemed to be aware of the layout of the club and knew where the main points were straight away. They split up into two groups of two. Two went to the booth sales area in the arcade and two went to the cash point.

“The amount they got away with, you’ll probably be able to count it on one hand. People always think there is loads of money in these places but there isn't.”

A Garda spokesman confirmed that up to four males entered the premises and left with a "sum of cash".

Gardaí said that while no further information is known at this stage, they believe the raiders left the scene in a silver car.

Gardaí are appealing for witnesses to contact Dundalk Garda station on 042 9388400. 

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