Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Justice and Equality, Jim O’ Callaghan has described an attack on a teenage boy who was left in need of a brain scan as a vicious act of violence.

Earlier this week, a teenage boy was attacked by a gang of five men with knives while travelling on a southside DART. The teenager was rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital where a brain scan was carried out on the teenager.

Deputy O’Callaghan said: “The epidemic of knife crime across the country in the last year highlights how carrying a knife in public has become acceptable in certain areas. This attitude needs to be addressed. In particular we need to educate teenagers who now see it as acceptable to carry knives on public transport.

“We need to eradicate this scourge and take back our streets for all people, day or night, and this is a key priority for Fianna Fáil. We will introduce a mandatory minimum 12-month sentence for the carrying of a knife in public with intent to cause injury or serious harm to another.”

“This is another sickening attack on an innocent teenage boy, and I hope the teenager makes a full recovery from this attack. The country is going through extremely challenging times at present. Gardaí have established a national Covid-19 unit based at Garda Headquarters in Dublin to co-ordinate the force’s response to the coronavirus outbreak here.

“I would urge teenagers not to be engaging in anti-social behaviour. There is now a fleet of more than 200 vehicles for community gardaí to maintain contact with people who are vulnerable, isolated or alone. This should be the priority for our emergency services and gardaí at present and remind teenagers who are off school to act responsibly in their own communities”