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Tackling drugs crucial to tackling crime – Ó Snodaigh

3 October, 2007


Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, speaking during Statements on Tackling Crime in the Dáil today, said to effectively tackle gangland we must tackle drugs from every angle. Deputy Ó Snodaigh, who this morning met the Garda Inspectorate to discuss Garda priorities, said the Government must give the same urgency to tackling crime as they did when the threat of foot and mouth loomed.

He said, "To effectively tackle gangland we must tackle drugs. We must tackle drugs from every angle. Every possible resource at the state's disposal must be mobilised to full effect - starting yesterday!

"Outside of today's Oireachtas engagement we have been proactively and critically engaging with the various policing institutions in an effort to ensure that serious drug and gun crime are prioritised at every level.

"Just this morning I met with the Garda Inspectorate as part of those efforts. In addition to this we have nearly 30 Joint Policing Committee members who are critically engaging in efforts to ensure that both local Gardaí and Councils live up to their responsibilities to tackle drug-related crime and anti-social behaviour.

"The Government must accept the scale of the drug problem which is the biggest cause of crime in our country. Every shipment of drugs coming into the country has a range of weapons of every calibre - enough to prosecute a war.

"I believe that drug barons have declared war on our society for the last thirty years and that the Government must give the same urgency to tackling this as they have when the threat of foot and mouth loomed. This includes providing Gardaí with the basic tools required for good policing such as a working radio system, proper Garda cars and Garda stations which are fit for purpose." ENDS

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