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Horror as teen thugs douse horse in petrol and then burn it alive

A gang of teens, some as young as 13, doused a horse in petrol and burned it alive in a Dublin suburb.

These horrific pictures show the remains of the horse just yards from the Luas red line tracks in Tallaght.

This horse is understood to have been tortured and suffered a brutal death in the early hours of yesterday morning.

It is the latest in a series of violent incidents in recent days which have included "pitched battles" among gangs of feral teens. In one terrifying incident, schoolboys targeted rivals with a petrol bomb.

Gardai have increased patrols in Tallaght amid growing tensions among children in the locality.


Our photos show the aftermath of the attack on the horse.

Gardai say that they have information that three teenagers were involved in the horrific incident but their investigation into the case is being hampered by a lack of quality CCTV and no arrests have been made.

CEO of Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Brian Gillen said the horse died a "horrendous death" that was "unimaginable".

"Whilst we encounter many horrific cruelty and neglect cases with regard to abandoned horses, we have never seen such levels of deliberate and depraved cruelty," he said.

Sources say that the number of violent incidents involving teenagers in the area has spiralled in recent weeks.

Five boys have already been arrested in relation to disturbances and on one occasion the garda helicopter was deployed over the Killinarden housing estate to monitor public order.

Last weekend a tense stand-off developed in that estate when two gangs of boys, mostly aged 13 and 14, engaged in a pitched battle.

It was followed by a petrol bomb attack in the early hours of Sunday morning.

A senior source explained: "This was a schoolyard thing that spread out of control – according to accounts it started over the theft of a mobile phone and then got worse because of a boy kissing a girl and the whole situation got exasperated by the children posting threats on Facebook.

"There were a groups of kids – around 30 on each side facing off against each other and a number of minor assaults and criminal damage incidents happened apart from the petrol bomb being thrown."