Petrol bomb thrown into Garda van


Gardaí in Cork are investigating an incident in which an officer's vehicle was petrol bombed while he was operating a speed checkpoint near Blarney last night.

The attack happened when the garda was sitting in a Gatso speed-detection van at the entrance to Primrose Hill estate on the main Blarney to Tower Road.

A man smashed in the passenger's window of the van and threw in a petrol bomb into the cabin of the van which was facing towards Blarney as the officer operated the speed-detection equipment.

The petrol bomb failed to explode, and the garda managed to extinguish the device before it caused him any injury or any serious damage to the vehicle.

The culprit, who was described as being about 6ft tall and wearing darking clothing and a hoodie top, fled on foot into Primrose Hill estate which is a few hundred yards from Tower.

The garda - a member of the Divisional Traffic Corps in his 30s - was uninjured but was badly shaken by the attack which happened at around 7.30pm.

Gardaí launched an immediate investigation into the attack, and the unexploded petrol bomb has been sent to Dublin for forensic analysis in the hope of identifying the attacker.

The device will be examined for fingerprint and any other forensic evidence which would help gardaí trace the person or persons behind the petrol bomb attack.

The van - which suffered a broken window and some smoke damage - is also been examined by Garda technical experts.

Gardaí were last night refusing to be drawn on whether the petrol bomb attack might be linked to two arson attacks on Blarney Garda station in the past 10 months.

Gardaí have appealed to anyone who may have any information on the van attack to contact them in confidence at Gurranebraher Garda station on 021-4946200.