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Ó Laoghaire publishes Bill that would see stolen good return to owners

11 July, 2019 - by Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

Sinn Féin TD Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire has this afternoon moved a Bill in the Dáil, in conjunction with Martin Kenny TD, which would create a National Property Register. This would be a system which would allow people have stolen property returned to them via a specific ID number for expensive items.

Teachta Ó Laoghaire said:

“Theft of farm equipment has risen by 40% in recent times and almost €8 million worth of equipment and tools were stolen from construction sites in Ireland in a ten-month period last year.

“According to figures released in September of last year, more than 14,000 bikes worth an estimated €2m have been stolen since 2016, with 83% stolen in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, and Galway.

“Using CSO figures, there were roughly 67,000 theft and related offences last year.

“These crimes have a huge impact on people, a tradesperson who has their equipment stolen especially if it is specialist equipment from a van can threaten their livelihoods.

“We are proposing ‘Taisceadán’, a National Property Register, which would be the creation of a centralised system to catalogue property with a specific ID number for expensive items such as tools, bicycles and machinery. This would be managed by An Garda Síochána.

“Very often when items are stolen, it is difficult for the Gardaí to seize goods because they cannot prove it has been stolen even where they know it probably has been.

“It is also the case that often goods cannot be returned to owners. According to IFA crime prevention officer Barry Carey, at a recent property recovery day in Nenagh 99% of items couldn’t be returned.

“This would make it easier for Gardaí to prove theft and prosecute those in possession of stolen property, and to reunite owners with their property. This is a model which has been effectively utilised in other jurisdictions.

“I have moved today’s Bill with the intention of progressing as soon as the Dáil returns and hope that I will have buy-in from all parties and progress it speedily.” 

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