Gardai hunt for TWO sex attack gangs in Dublin

Two incidents, by two different gangs, took place on Monday
Two incidents, by two different gangs, took place on Monday

Gardaí are hunting for two gangs behind separate brutal sex assaults on young girls.

The two incidents happened within an hour of each other in the Springfield area of Tallaght on Monday.

Earlier this week it emerged that a 14-year-old girl, who has learning difficulties, was subjected to a savage rape by a gang of young men.

It has now emerged that two sisters, who are aged in their late teens, were also sexually assaulted in the same locality of Springfield around an hour after the first attack.

Last night, sources said that gardaí were confident that the two incidents were carried out by different groups of perpetrators.

The rape of the 14-year-old schoolgirl happened shortly after 4pm on Monday in a green space close to the Ashgrove apartments, opposite St Mark's GAA Club, on the Cookstown Road.

The traumatised victim has given a detailed statement to a specialist child interviewer, and officers are following a definite line of inquiry in the case.

It is understood that CCTV has played a major part in the investigation, but no arrests have been made.

But gardaí in Tallaght became aware of a second sexual assault later on Monday when it was reported to them that two sisters were attacked by a group of men as they walked through Maplewood, which is also in Springfield, at 5.30pm.

The mother of these two young girls told a local newspaper that her daughters were walking back from the shops on Maplewood Drive when they were attacked by six young males.

"They tried to hold my daughters' hands down by their sides and were groping them and putting their hands down their tops," the woman told the 'Tallaght Echo'.

"They also exposed themselves to my daughters."

Tallaght gardaí are investigating both incidents and are appealing for information from the public.

Local Fianna Fáil councillor Charlie O'Connor, who is a former resident of the Ashgrove estate, described how locals were "absolutely appalled" and appealed for anyone with information to contact gardaí.

"It is an extremely shocking thing to happen. I'd like to extend my sympathies to the victim and her family during this traumatic time," added Cllr O'Connor.