Belfast Telegraph

Jail call after sectarian bombing

A sectarian attack in Northern Ireland has sparked calls for increased jail sentences for petrol bombers.

A car was burned out and a house suffered scorch damage in the early morning incident at Killyvally Park in Garvagh, Co Londonderry.

The SDLP MLA for East Londonderry, John Dallat, said the attack, shortly after 2am on Saturday, happened outside the home of a Catholic woman.

The incident is being treated as a sectarian hate crime by the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

Mr Dallat called on Justice Minister David Ford to bring forward legislation to impose realistic jail sentences on thugs who throw petrol bombs and endanger life.

"The hate laws are totally inadequate to deal with thugs who specialise in filling bottles with petrol and throwing them not knowing if they will burn out a car, burn down a house or murder someone," he said.

"Garvagh has been quiet for a considerable time. Ordinary people are trying to get on with their lives, earn a living, educate their children and put the past behind them."

Mr Dallat added: "The sell-by date for petrol bombers is long over; it should never have started and most certainly it is time for laws which adequately address hate crimes."

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