Organised crime, gang attacks and intimidation rife in part of Waterford City, Councillor claims
Organised crime, gangs attacks on houses, fires, and damage to cars are all part of a concerted campaign of intimidation trying to force families out of their homes in a Waterford city community, Fianna Fail Councillor Eamon Quinlan has claimed.
Last weekend, residents of Carrickpherish were subjected to0 anti-social behaviour and intimidation, when numerous fires were lit on public areas, close to family homes.
These fires are just the latest in a long list of incidents aimed at putting fear into the residents of Gracedieu and Carrickpherish and Mr Quinlan is calling for more action from the authorities to protect the people living in these areas.
Fianna Fail Councillor Eamon Quinlan says organised crime has taken root in the area and is making life unbearable for those people who bought homes in the area.
“This week saw the latest in a series of fires started maliciously in the Carrickpherish area of Waterford City,” Cllr Quinlan said.
“For months now, the residents of Gracedieu and Carrickpherish have been subjected to fires started near their properties on a regular basis, sometimes several times in a single week. This comes on the back of a shooting outside Mount Suir estate, physical attacks on children and attacks on homes.
“ I have been liaising with locals for a long time who have had their windows smashed in, tyres on their cars slashed and now fires started adjacent to their homes on a regular basis.
“While some appears to be random anti social behaviour, it has been clear for some time that there is a concerted effort to target specific homes to drive out residents and then systematically move onto other homes,” Cllr Qunilan said.
The criminal activity in the area is causing more problems according to the councillor, who says he is inundated with requests from people who want to get away from the area. He is calling for more stringent action.
“I have dozens of transfer requests logged with myself alone from people looking to get out of the area as they feel it is just unsafe. Local estate agents tell me they have homes on their books for almost two years that they can’t sell even during a housing crisis.
“The Council can continue to pay lip service to the idea that they want an expansion of private estates in the area to balance things out but who in their right mind is going to mortgage themselves up to the hilt to face local grief on an unparalleled scale.
“The Council is paying a fortune in taxpayers money to renovate homes and apartments on a regular basis. All to cover up the serious shortcomings the Council has allowed take root in the area.
“This has lead to a more organised criminal element ‘taking up space’ in the area in recent times to conduct their business.
“This is the element that now seeks to drive out law abiding persons so that they have no one watching their activities.
“Many resident associations along with area Councillors have been calling on the local authority to ‘beef up’ its commitment to the area, not only in homes but in an investment in services so that the majority law abiding locals don’t find themselves as isolated. Tackling these organised criminal elements however has remained in the starting blocks for years.
“I will be calling at our next public Council meeting for a taskforce comprised of multiple state agencies,” Cllr Quinlan concluded.