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Carjacking is becoming a major problem -- gardai

GARDAI are becoming increasingly concerned about the problem of criminals hijacking cars -- particularly taxis.

The chain of events that led to the death of serial teenage thief Bernard 'Barney' McDonagh (below) started when he was involved in a knifepoint hijacking of a Toyota Avensis taxi being driven by a foreign national at Tyrconnell Road in Inchicore at 11.30pm on Tuesday.

The 16-year-old criminal was killed and his 18-year-old cousin seriously injured after the stolen taxi crashed less than an hour later.

Last week, gardai in Navan, Co Meath, arrested a man they believe hijacked two taxi-drivers at gunpoint in separate incidents.

The suspect -- a 24-year-old man -- was picked up by gardai at a housing estate in Navan while he drove a taxi that was stolen at gunpoint in Tyrellstown, west Dublin.

The suspect is also being linked to a terrifying incident which occurred at 10.30pm on February 28 when a taxi man picked up a fare at a taxi rank in Drogheda, Co Louth, and asked to be driven to Slane, Co Meath.

The driver was forced to pull up at the Riverview Estate and was robbed at gunpoint.