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The house on Forest Park, Celbridge Road in Leixlip, was falsely rumoured to be earmarked for refugee accommodation. Sam Boal

Man (40s) arrested in connection with February arson attack on vacant house in Kildare

The site had been the centre of protests in weeks prior to the criminal damage.

A MAN IN his 40s has been arrested in connection with an arson attack at a vacant house in Co Kildare.

Gardaí previously launched an investigation into two incidents of criminal damage by fire that occurred on the Celbridge Road in Leixlip in the early hours of Tuesday 30 January and Wednesday 7 February.

“A man was arrested this morning in connection with this investigation, and is currently detained pursuant to Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984 at a Garda Station in the Co Kildare area,” a garda spokesperson said.

When the attacks happened earlier this year, gardaí said at the time that the building had been subject “of a significant volume of misinformation, disinformation and rumour” in relation to potential future use.

The site had been the centre of protests in weeks prior, with claims by far-right activists on social media that international protection applicants were to be housed at the property.

This was described as “misinformation” by local Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy in February – the deputy had told The Journal that that the “building was never intended to be used for the purpose that people are protesting outside it”.

Garda investigations remain ongoing.

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