Thirty feuding gangs 'pushing Mountjoy Prison to breaking point'

POA chief warns gangs are running their operations - inside and outside jail - from their cells.

There are 30 warring “factions” in Mountjoy Prison alone stretching the overloaded Irish prison system to breaking point, a top officer has warned.

John Clinton, General Secretary of the POA, claims his members are struggling to separate the dozens of prisoners engaged in violent feuds.

He has called on the Prison Service to declare Portlaoise as a specialist facility to house gangs – much the same way as they did with the McCarthy/Dundon Keane/Collopy Limerick feud.

He said: “Gangs in prison over the past number of years have become a huge challenge for people working in our prison system, currently we have up to 30 gangs in Mountjoy and the logistics of just keeping them separated apart is very, very difficult for people working on the floors of our prison.

“The impact is very, very difficult on staff. The logistics of keeping criminal gangs apart alone is a huge issue. One gang will want to get at the other gang, when they do our members have to intervene, and our members can get assaulted as has been pointed out, and injured during the course of their duties.

“The Prison Service has indicated they’re opening up a unit in the Midlands, however we believe it’s not big enough. The State responded in the 1970s to the subversive threat in this country, and they responded very quickly, they separated the people and put them into one area.”

Mr Clinton said that gangs were running their operations inside and outside the prisons from their cells. They have even hits on fellow inmates using their fellow lags.

He said: “We believe that they should not be able to control the general population in prisons as they are at the moment, with so many people on protection because of criminal gangs. We believe that’s not the way the criminal justice system should work.

“They control the prison population in the way they control their outside territories. They have plenty of influence, there’s quite a lot of them, they group together and a group of criminals can put their rule of law down on other criminals if that’s allowed to happen.

“The feud won’t go away inside the walls either so we can't under any circumstance have one gang member from one feuding faction anywhere near the other so the logistics of that are quite self-explanatory.

Read more news of Dublin on our site.

“It’s quite difficult, you must keep them apart, and you know we have a duty of care to prisoners. We can’t just let one gang member get to another gang member and do what they do on the outside or we would have people lined up in bodybags coming out. It just can’t happen.”

Michael Donnellan, Director General of the Irish Prison Service confirmed that the service intend to use Ireland’s high security prison to deal with the gangs.

He said: "Our policy has been for the last number of years is to disrupt the gang structure, place them in several prisons around our estate, particularly in two or three, but we are intending to use Portlaoise more in the second half of the year for the very more serious people who are intimidating within the prison gangs.”
feudinggangs Prison
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
3 views in november
I recommend
No recommendations yet


Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

A 20-year-old woman had a bag stolen from her at knife point during a robbery at an isolated bus stop in Dublin. The shocking incident happened at the bus stop at the Blanchardstown slip road on the N3 which serves routes heading to Co Meath. Gardai have told Dublin Live that the woman received a minor injury to her hand during the robbery. No arrests have been made so far in connection with the incident and the investigation is continuing. A garda spokesw...
Two foreign- nationals have been arrested after over €2 million worth of Heroin was seized in Dublin Airport. A man in his 30s and woman in her 50s were taken into custody after Revenue Officers caught the massive 15kg haul which had made its way over from Pakistan. The woman, who was accompanied by a small child, was met by the man in arrivals before they were arrested and taken to Ballymun Garda Station. A Revenue spokesperson said that the arrests came...
Inner City Helping Homeless are asking for the public's help in filling a Luas with gifts this Christmas. Fill A Luas asks the public to donate a shoebox of gifts to the homeless at Connolly Luas Stop on Thursday, December 6. This is the fourth year of the charity event. This year, Fill A Luas will be a week-long event to give people more time to donate a shoebox over the holidays with the aim of collecting more than the record of 20,000 shoeboxes. The pub...
The sightings of UFOs over the coast by three sets of airline pilots has led to Ireland being seen as a hotbed of alien activity. It has emerged the crews who reported an unidentified object streaking through the skies over Co Kerry are not alone. Dublin Live has been inundated with reports of similar sightings around the country in recent weeks. The Irish Aviation Authority has begun an investigation into the appearance of the mysterious objects which wer...
Ombudsman Peter Tyndall has expressed his disappointment that the Health Service Executive has not fully implemented the recommendations made in his 2015 investigation into the healthcare system. The Ombudsman's 2015 report, Learning to Get Better, found that many people were afraid to complain about the treatment they receive in hospitals and that many hospitals were not learning important lessons from complaints they receive.  The HSE and Department of H...
A new programme aimed at helping immigrant teachers find work in Irish schools opens to applicants today. The course, at Dublin’s Marino Institute of Education, aims to provide immigrants who are qualified teachers, but not working as such, with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to enable them to find employment here. Recent research has found that while Ireland’s school student population is now highly diverse, teachers here continue to be overwhelmin...
EU and UK negotiators have agreed a text that deals with the Irish border, RTÉ News understands. The text was agreed at around 9pm last night and then transmitted to Downing Street. While two well-placed sources have confirmed that the text was "as stable as it can be", they say it would not be correct to say that the negotiations have "concluded". According to both sources, there will be one backstop to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland. The ba...
The Cabinet will meet this morning to consider developments around the draft text of a Brexit withdrawal agreement. Yesterday, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar put his colleagues on standby for this morning's meeting, which is due to be held at 9.30am. Mr Varadkar and the Tánaiste will update their Government colleagues on what has happened over the last 24 hours. It follows a meeting last night between Mr Varadkar, Tánaiste Simon Coveney, Minister for Finance Pasch...
A number of events have taken place around the country and in Northern Ireland to mark the centenary of the ending of World War I. Locations where ceremonies have taken place include Belfast, Enniskillen, Cork, Limerick, Sligo, Kilkenny, Westmeath, Galway and Tipperary. In Cork city, Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Mick Finn laid a wreath at the Cenotaph on the Grand Parade. He was joined by relatives of those who died in WWI and members of the Cork branch of the...