'There has to be consequences for these teens going wild on the streets'
Delivery workers ‘fearful of gang areas’
IRELAND must wake up and stop lawless teens running wild or another tragedy like the death of delivery driver Thiago Cortes will happen again, his devastated fiancée said yesterday.
The Brazilian native (28), who was due to marry Teresa Dantas later this year, died in hospital on Wednesday two days after being fatally injured in a hit-and-run on North Wall Quay while working in his job as a food delivery rider for Deliveroo.
He was struck by a car with no insurance or NCT which a group of teenagers from the north inner city had taken on a joyride.
Gardai have identified the four teens who are from Sheriff Street and surrounding areas and are expected to make arrests in the case.
Teenagers from the same area have previously been involved in attacks on delivery riders who yesterday told the Sunday World that they avoid some parts of the city due to the number of such attacks.
Teresa said Ireland needs to address the problem of lawless teens who she believes are regularly attacking people with little or no consequences.
“They need to have harder deterrents against them. Teenagers going wild on the streets is something happening since I moved to Ireland.
“That’s not acceptable. I know it’s not the majority of Irish people. I really do know it is a minority but they are causing problems and something needs to be done. Maybe the legislation needs to change.
“There has to be consequences for their acts. It can’t continue like that. Something really tragic happened this week and it could happen again at any time now.”
Teresa said she was disgusted when teens from the north inner city fired fireworks at the vigil for Thiago in Dublin on Wednesday.
“Even on the day of the vigil some people threw fireworks at us.
“I really don’t know what type of feelings these people have towards us and drivers only doing their jobs. I really can’t understand.”
She said the parents of the teenagers also need to take responsibility and that the feral teens are giving Ireland a bad reputation abroad.
“I know they don’t represent Irish people but unfortunately when they do something like that, that’s what we see on the news. Maybe if you’re not here you’ll think Ireland is not a good country and it’s not good for you guys. It’s not good for anyone.”
Teresa said that delivery drivers face too many attacks in Dublin. “That’s something that happens quite often against delivery drivers. We know of many attacks that have happened before.”
The job is low paid but for some delivery riders it comes with very high risks.
Francisco Tertuliano Oliveira Neto, known as Neto, was hospitalised after being attacked by a mob of 11 teenagers when he was delivering in Finglas last year.
He was hit on the head and beaten with a baseball as the gang repeatedly kicked and punched him after attacking him from behind.
Neto suffered a broken nose and other injuries in the attack. The gang, whose motive was robbery, stole his motorbike along with his mobile phone and €850 in cash. They were never caught. Neto told the Sunday World he thought he was going to die during the attack.
“I needed to go to Brazil and do two surgeries to correct fractures of the face and nose. Unfortunately, I was unlucky enough to cross my path with one of these gangs, sometimes I still have panic attacks and I ended up developing some phobias due to what happened.”
He said attacks on delivery workers are common across Dublin and in many cases the perpetrators are never apprehended.
“What makes me sadder is that nothing happens to offenders. We just want to work.
“My case to date has not been solved, without suspicion, nothing.”
He said attacks are so frequent in some areas that some riders avoid them altogether.
“Some regions are very complicated...I avoid going to places like Finglas, Ballymun, Bluebell, Inchicore, Summerhill and Sheriff Street. They are very risky.”
He said when he was attacked gardai gave him all the support he needed but did not find the culprits.
“Unfortunately this time we lost a co-worker. A life is gone. It’s very sad because we leave our country, family and friends in search of dreams and everything ends this way.”
Several other delivery riders have spoken out this week on social media about the trouble they face.
Gabriel Fernandes said: “We’re tired of these guys. I can’t stand to go out to work and have to run from these guys.”
Meanwhile a GoFundMe fundraising page started by a friend of Teresa and Thigao had raised over €65,000 by yesterday afternoon.
Ana Carla Moreira, who set up the page, told the Sunday World that it “was created to raise donations to cover all costs of Thiago’s death, to help his family and to let people show their condolences”.
A separate GoFundMe created by Irishman John Goodwin had raised a further €11,000 by yesterday.