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Gangland thugs need to be 'run out of this city' -- TD

DUBLIN'S gangland criminals should be "run out of this city" before they ruin its reputation, a government TD has warned.

Fianna Fail's Darragh O'Brien -- who lives just a few hundred metres from where Sean Winters was gunned down -- told the Herald that the last message Ireland needs to send out is that "these guys have a grip on Dublin".

Mr O'Brien said that his neighbours were genuinely reeling as a result of Sunday night's horror attack but admitted that it would be impossible to "totally eradicate this type of crime".

"We've got to do everything we can to run them out of this city and stop them doing what they are doing," he said.

"It's not good. Let's be straight about it, it isn't.

The TD for Dublin North defended the Government's record on gangland crime but accepted that 16 gang-related murders so far this year was way too high.

"If you take my constituency, we've had two in very quick succession so that is a very worrying trend."

Asked if shootings in areas like Portmarnock meant gangland crime was now just an endemic part of society, he said: "I wouldn't understate it. Seriously, people are genuinely upset. You don't expect this to happen. There is a dead body, there's a dead person.


"Somebody has been shot dead in a field across the road from their houses and their apartments. That's not an easy thing for any community to deal with."

Speaking to the Herald at Fianna Fail's annual think-in in Galway, Mr O'Brien added that the Garda Commissioner had assured him that the resources are in place to tackle underworld crime.

"If you talk to the gardai they will tell you that the level of gangland activity in the country is down. A lot of the main bosses have left, they're gone.

"You are never going to eradicate gun crime, you are never going to eradicate gangs.

"We have to continue to make Ireland a very difficult place for them to operate in."