Howlin: Public needs more information on what Government knew about Dublin 'protection money'

The Labour Party leader says we need to know who knew what about alleged payments of ‘protection’ money to criminals in West Dublin.

This week the High Court heard how construction firms working on Dublin City Council housing projects paid them up to €1,500 a week to prevent attacks.

Tánaiste Simon Coveney, who was Minister for Housing at the time, says he wasn't made aware of the claims.

Labour leader Brendan Howlin says political accountability is needed:

"The Tánaiste, who was then Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, acknowledged that his office received complaints about this matter but he said it was never brought to his attention," Mr Howlin said.

What kind of an arrangement exists in a Minister's office that something as profound as this - public monies were being used for protection rackets - would not be immediately brought to the Minister's attention?

"And you'd expect the Minister to act with great alacrity about it," Mr Howlin added.

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