Fianna Fáil attacks opposition over crime


Fine Gael and Labour are talking tough on crime but "talk is cheap", said Fianna Fáil today as they went on the attack over the crime issue.

The Taoiseach, Mr Ahern, said that Fine Gael plans provided no money for extra gardaí or prison spaces and Labour’s programme is based on six pledges, none of which mention crime.

"Sinn Féin’s proposal to abolish the Special Criminal Court would require a constitutional amendment which, if carried, would leave Ireland defenceless against organised subversives and criminals with the capacity to intimidate jurors, he said.

Mr O’Donoghue went on to say that Sinn Féin’s policy would not protect Ireland from organised drug dealers. "The question for the electorate is – Why is Sinn Féin seeking to alter the law in favour of organised criminals?," he said.

Speaking in Portlaoise, Mr Ahern said Fianna Fáil was the only party credible on crime.

"Other parties are talking tough but their record both in Government and in opposition demonstrates their lack of credibility. Continuing the fight against crime will require the extra Gardaí that Fianna Fáil are committed to providing," he said.

The Taoiseach also said that Fianna Fáil are not complacent on the issue. "No level of crime is acceptable," he said.

Today’s Fianna Fáil statement reiterated their campaign promise to:

  • Expand the Garda Síochána by a further 2000;
  • Expand the use of CCTV cameras;
  • Target drug dealers at local level and go after the assets of middleranking drug dealers; and
  • Augment the powers of the gardaí to close down premises that are the focus of public order complaints and enable persons facing conviction for certain public order offences to be made the subject of an exclusion order from the vicinity of certain types of premises.