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Saturday 28 January 2023 Dublin: 4°C
# Vigilantes
Poster encourages community to 'clobber' burglars with hurls and golf clubs
A local councillor said he does not condone the violence encouraged by the notice posted in a Dublin housing estate but said there has been a lot of petty crime in the area – particularly targeting the elderly.

poster Emma Nolan Emma Nolan

A NOTICE POSTED on lampposts and trees around an estate in Stillorgan, Dublin, yesterday evening encourages locals to “clobber the ‘sewer crawling rats’” involved in crime in the area.

The note adds that it is “time the smelly rats were exterminated”. One local said there had been an increase in burglaries in the area in the last six months and elderly people appear to be the targets.

Local Fianna Fáil councillor Gerry Horkan said he spotted a group of “young fellas putting them on bus shelters” yesterday evening when he was out walking in the area. He said they were in a car and he thought at first that they were putting up campaign posters for the elections.

“I went over to have a look so I know exactly what it says – I took one of them down,” he told “It’s just young people messing.”

It wasn’t a van with a load of heavies in bomber jackets so whether it’s just a precursor or a teaser campaign I don’t know.

Horkan said there has been a lot of petty crime recently as “it’s a very nice area with lots of nice houses and lots of elderly people”.

His own campaign literature reminds people in the community to be aware of the threats of bogus callers.

An elderly neighbour of the councillor was targeted by one of these callers who told her they needed to check her gas meter, though she does not have gas. They then pretended they were there to tell her about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Horkan said the woman was “worried and concerned” afterwards that people may be watching her house now that they know there is a vulnerable person living there.

While the Fianna Fáil councillor said he would urge people to be aware of securing their homes, he added that he does not condone the kind of vigilante behaviour encouraged in these posters.

Read: Tips to combat bogus callers who prey on the old and vulnerable>

Read: ‘Vigilantes’ protect areas of London as David Cameron feels pressure>