Thursday 22 February 2018

Masked machete raider terrorises staff in vet clinic robbery

Ken Foy Crime Correspondent

A mobile veterinary clinic has been forced to move to outside a garda station after a terrifying robbery.

A masked man armed with a "machete-like weapon" entered the Irish Blue Cross mobile clinic in Ballyfermot, threatening staff and demanding cash at 8.40pm last Wednesday.

He managed to get less than €500 in cash before fleeing.

There were no injuries and the weapon has not been recovered.


Gardai do not have a full description of the thief and no arrests have been made in the case, which is being investigated by Ballyfermot gardai.

Now, for the first time in 50 years, the Irish Blue Cross has been forced to relocate the clinic from Kylemore Road to outside Ballyfermot Garda Station on Rossmore Avenue as a result of the robbery.

Chris Connolly, the manager of the Irish Blue Cross, said the robbery was "horrid".

"Relocating the clinic occurred as a result of a horrid robbery at our Ballyfermot location last week, where a masked man armed with a weapon threatened our volunteers and frightened clients before he made off with the night's donations," she said.

"Thankfully, no one was hurt but our team was badly shaken.

"Superintendent Brendan Connolly for the area and Sergeant Jim Curran and his team at Ballyfermot Garda Station have been superb and supportive in the aftermath.

"Parking the clinic outside the Ballyfermot Garda Station offers peace of mind for everyone involved in the service and for those whose pets benefit from it.

"Our Ballyfermot Mobile Clinic team is undeterred in carrying out its invaluable work that will continue as normal - but just from a new location," Ms Connolly added.

She said that there had never been an "incident of this magnititude" before at the clinic, but added that the Ballyfermot clinic's hours will remain the same (7pm to 8.30pm every Wednesday).


"Our mobile clinics are operated by teams of dedicated volunteers, who give generously of their evenings and share a common love for animal welfare.

"Our well-known Ballyfermot volunteers, Gordon and Eamon, have been part of the service since its early days," she said.

"The people of Ballyfermot have given resounding words of support, which has been a great comfort to everyone involved."

The Irish Blue Cross provides low-cost veterinary services to the pets of low-income families.

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