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‘Traumatic’ suspected arson attack on home of garda in Co Louth condemned

The Garda Representative Association said it was the third such attack on a garda in the past 18 months.

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The home of a garda has been damaged in a suspected arson attack in Co Louth (Brian Lawless/PA)

The home of a garda has been damaged in a suspected arson attack in Co Louth (Brian Lawless/PA)

The home of a garda has been damaged in a suspected arson attack in Co Louth (Brian Lawless/PA)

The home of a garda has been damaged in a suspected arson attack in Co Louth.

A Garda spokesman said the alarm was raised shortly after 11pm on Sunday and the blaze was brought under control by firefighters.

There were no reports of any injuries but the exterior of the property was badly damaged.

Gardai are appealing for information about a white van which was seen in the Bay Estate area at approximately 3pm on Sunday.

The Garda Representative Association (GRA) condemned the incident and said it was the third such attack in the past 18 months.

GRA general secretary Pat Ennis said gardai in the border region have been repeatedly attacked for reasons connected to their work.

“This is the third attack on a garda’s home in and round Dundalk in the past 18 months and there was also an attack in the Cavan/Monaghan Division,” he said.

“This was a truly traumatic incident for our member and his family. He had two small children and an expectant wife and had to evacuate the house after neighbours raised the alarm.”

“We have had attacks on members’ property in the past and they are still waiting resolution to their claims for compensation and financial support for security measures to be put in place at their home.”

Fianna Fail’s justice spokesman, Jim O’Callaghan, said: “An attack upon a member of the gardai is an attack upon the whole community.

“Such acts of violence cannot be tolerated and those responsible must be brought to justice. We all need to stand up to these acts of violence and intimidation.

“This is a shocking act of violence and intimidation against a member of the gardai and his young family to take place.

“There is no place in our community for acts of violence and harassment such as those seen in Dundalk and they will not be tolerated.”

Local gardai have sealed off the area for a technical and forensic examination.

They are appealing for witnesses to come forward, particularly “anyone who was in the Bay Estate area between 10.30pm and 11.30pm”.

PA