RTE Prime Time: Finglas priest blasts ‘savagery’ and ‘cowardice’ of local gangland feud
It comes after several homes were firebombed at the weeken
A priest in Finglas is warning young men not to get involved in organised crime as a feud between rival gangs escalates in the area.
Speaking to RTE’s Prime Time, Fr Seamus Ahearne said that he has seen “too many murders” in the 25 years he has been a priest in the north Dublin suburb.
Fr Ahearne said that young men in particular are attracted to designer goods and the money that criminality can bring.
Fr Ahearne said: “They are attracted to the designer goods, and all of that and the bling, of course and it’s easy money. Sometimes it’s not, because the end product is they all die young.”
It comes amid an escalation in tensions in the Finglas area following the murder of James Whelan, who was shot dead on April 3.
The 29-year-old father-of-one had previously been close to but fell out with notorious Finglas gangster Mr Flashy.
Meanwhile, last Saturday morning the home of Mr Whelan’s mother, who is innocent and has no involvement in crime, was firebombed in Finglas.
A second home belonging to an innocent relative of Mr Flashy’s was also attacked in a suspected petrol bombing on Saturday evening. The relative does not have any involvement in crime and neither does anyone else living at the home.
In April, Fr Ahearne was the celebrant for James Whelan’s funeral.
He said: “When I see the funeral of James Whelan, there’s a very big casket, in gold colour, but to me it’s a box and a dead child and a bereaved mother and a sister and a brother.
“So, all the bikes flying around, and all the champagne and the balloons flying, do nothing whatsoever for me and someone who’s dead and gone.”
Fr Ahearne said that there is “no glamour” in shootings or burning a house.
Meanwhile, Fr Ahearne also said that he can’t bear the good name of the Finglas being damaged by recent events, describing it as a community of “goodness, humanity, humour and honesty.”
Fr Ahearne also blasted the “savagery” and “cowardice” of those involved in the escalating gang feud.
He said: “One of the things that in a way that humbles me and moves me all the time is to have met so many mothers who have said in some ways, ‘I’m glad he’s dead, because I don’t want what happened to him, and what he might do, to affect anyone else.’