Fianna Fáil Senator and Seanad Spokesperson for Justice has said that new figures released further demonstrate the need to introduce greater support for Gardaí tackling drug related crime in Dublin Fingal.

Data released by Joint Policing Committee shows an 84% increase in the possession of drugs for personal use in the 12 months up to the end of October while there was 29% increase in the possession of drugs for sale or supply in the same period.

“These figures prove that Gardaí need more support and more resources to tackle drug related crime in our community. Sustained cuts to garda resources over the past four years, including the closure of Rush garda station have impacted on the force’s ability to effectively carry out their duties.

“The increases in the number of possessions of offensive weapons recorded in the 12 months up to the end of October are very worrying. Violent crime is a cause of huge concern and the Government needs to support gardaí in combating this locally.

“As was noted in the recent AGS Report, there are significant resource demands on Drug Unit Staff to support other units in the district. We have witnessed distressing incidents of drug and gangland related crime in Dublin North over recent months.These crimes have brought fear among our community and a clear message must be sent by Government that this brutality will not be tolerated,” added Senator Clifford-Lee.

“I welcome the fact that burglaries have decreased but this is not the case for all parts of the country. There are some positive elements in these recent crime figures but equally there are worrying trends that need to be addressed. I believe that it is extremely important that the re-opening of Rush garda station is seriously reviewed and considered.”