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Kevin Lunney attack: Justice Minister says he has 'complete confidence' in gardai after Michael D'Arcy claims they 'let down' QIH directors

This comes after QIH directors suffered years of intimidation and following the recent abduction and torture of director Kevin Lunney.

Wexford TD D'Arcy claimed that the situation "should have been dealt with sooner and better" by senior gardaí and insisted that it isn't an issue of resources.

Speaking on RTÉ's The Week in Politics today, Mr D'Arcy said: "The disappointment wasn’t from the very top, from Commissioner Drew Harris, it wasn’t from the Taoiseach, it wasn’t from the Minister for Justice. The disappointment was on the ground in relation to the policing that happened in those areas.

"There are gardaí there, there are senior gardaí there, and it is their job to ensure what happened didn’t happen. It has happened. But it’s crucial to stay with the aspect of the paymaster.

"Of course those directors are disappointed. What happened was an outrage it was hideous the treatment of Kevin Lunney and it should have been dealt with sooner and better at that level, but I mean on every on every occasion, the Taoiseach shouldn’t have to get involved, or the Minister for Justice or the Garda Commissioner.

"There are senior gardaí in those divisions in those areas who let those gentlemen down."

Michael D’Arcy. Photo: Damien Eagers / INM

However Minister Flanagan has stressed that he has confidence in cross-border policing under "challenging" circumstances.

He said in a statement this evening: "Policing in the border region has long been very challenging as criminals have always sought to exploit that border. 
"I have every confidence that An Garda Síochána and the PSNI are working together at historically close levels to prevent and investigate cross-border crime and the fruits of that cooperation were evident this week in a series of major searches.

"Nobody is above the law anywhere on the island and the new Joint Investigation Team agreement signed this week formalises the necessary policing cooperation and leaves no hiding place for criminals operating in the border area - they will be relentlessly pursued in both jurisdictions."

Meanwhile, Mr Lunney was among the QIH directors that Mr Varadkar met today.

The Taoiseach said afterwards: "This afternoon I met the five directors of Quinn Industrial Holdings.

"I sought this meeting in order to thank the directors for their courage, their determination and their commitment to this vitally important company which creates so much employment and economic activity in a region that needs it."

Mr Varadkar said he wanted to hear their views and assure them of the Government’s support for QIH, which employs more than 800 people and is "an integral part of the community".

He added: "In particular, I wanted to thank Kevin Lunney for the resilience he has shown following his barbaric abduction, assault and torture."

Mr Varadkar discussed his recent meeting with Garda Commissioner Drew Harris and Minister for Justice CHarlie Flanagan.

He said he assured the directors "that their own security, that of their employees, and law and order in the border region is treated with the utmost seriousness at the top of Government."

Mr Varadkar added: "Law and order must, and will, prevail in all parts of the country."

He said: "We agreed to stay in contact as the criminal investigation against the perpetrators proceeds."

Online Editors

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