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No garda involvement in removal of Animal Bars from shelves of Cork shop

Claims have been made that the Animal Bars, which have foil wrappers, are popular with drug users.

Image: Google Maps

A GROCERY SHOP owner in Cork says Gardaí did not tell him to stop selling Animal Bars – despite a sign saying they did so going viral on social media earlier today.

Irish social media has been trying to uncover the mystery of why the shop had erected a sign stating it wasn’t selling the milk chocolate treat anymore ‘on direction of the gardaí’.

A photograph made its way to Reddit and Twitter of the sign, leading some people to speculate if it had to do with the fact foil is used to prepare heroin.

Such was the online interest that The Journal took a look into the confectionary confusion centred around a Centra shop at Denroches Cross on the Glasheen Road in Cork city.

The sign said that gardaí had issued advice to stop selling the bars – so we contacted a garda spokesperson who said this wasn’t in fact the case.

“Gardaí are aware of an image circulating on social media which refers to a sign displayed in a business premises in Cork. No such instruction or advice was issued by An Garda Síochána.

“Local Gardaí have liaised with the business and the sign has since been removed.

“Gardaí in Anglesea Street continue to support local businesses by issuing crime prevention advice and conducting regular, high visibility patrols,” the spokesperson said. 

We then called the shop and spoke to owner Denis Whelton, who said that his staff had been getting a lot of hassle from some people wanting to buy the 20c bars of chocolate. 

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Whelton said that he took the decision because, he claimed, drug users were coming into his shop to buy products with foil on them. The Animal Bars are wrapped in foil and then a paper wrapper.

“The gardaí didn’t ask us, we did it out of our own discretion to stop people bugging us for foil stuff. 

“This has all steamrolled out of that. We’re not the only ones – there’s four or five shops in the city centre area [doing similar] for the same reason. 

“To be fair, the guards give us great support in the area because this is a big problem the last couple of months. It is very hard to catch the [drug] dealers but the guards are actively pursuing it.

“The gardaí had nothing to do with the sign and they would never ask me either,” he said.  

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