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Aggravated Burglary, Tang, Athlone, Westmeath on the 26/1/13

The Gardaí at Athlone Garda Station are appealing for information in relation to an aggravated burglary which occurred at the Parochial House, Tang, Co Westmeath, on Saturday the 26th January 2013 at approximately 9.20pm.

On the evening of the burglary the sacrosanct had just finished work for the evening and was leaving the house. She observed a dark coloured saloon car coming towards the house from the car park. There were three males in the car who demanded she opened the door. One of the raiders was armed with an iron bar about a foot long with a ring at the end of it.

Once inside the house they located the priest, who was on the phone to his sister. One of the raiders’s pulled the phone off the priest while the other raiders began to search the house. The raider who remained with the priest began to get frustrated. The sacrosanct told the raiders she had money in her car. The other raiders began to search the house and one of them went to her car and took her purse that contained money. They raider’s took money bags and money from the priest’s wallet.

On Monday 28th of January 2013 between the hours of 6.45 pm and 7.15 pm a similar incident involved raiders with similar descriptions and modus operandi occured at a Parochial House in Belturbet, Cavan. The car used by the suspects is believed to be a dark coloured Volkswagen Passat.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland are investigating a similar burglary that occurred at  7.45 pm on the same evening at the Parish Hall in Kinawley, Co Fermanagh where parishioners were counting donations from mass the previous evening.

Description of Raiders:

Raiders 1: Approx. Five foot eleven inches in height, in his early 30’s, heavy build, tight black hair, clean shaven. He wore a woolly cap, pale / grey zipped top with dark trousers.

Raider 2: Five foot ten inches in height, in his 20’s and thin build. He wore a yellow jacket with red trim like a rain jacket and blue tracksuit bottoms. He had reddish hair.

Raider 3: Third male was wearing a balaclava and dark clothes. He stayed in background and didn’t get a good look at him.


• Gardaí are appealing to anybody who saw a dark coloured saloon car (possibly a Passat or Mondeo) in the tang area on the evening of the 26th January 2013.

• Anybody in the area on the evening including mass attendees who may have seen anyone or any vehicle acting suspiciously.

• We are appealing for all retailers and filling stations that may have seen the suspect vehicle and its occupants on the evening to come forward.

• One of the raiders was particularly overweight / heavy with a tight hair cut with black hair. Another raider was tall with reddish hair and wearing a yellow rain jacket with red trim. This may help someone to identify the group.

• Coins were stolen during the raid and the offenders may have changed them for notes with some retailers, appeal for those to notify Gardaí.


Gardaí at Athlone Garda Station are investigating                               Telephone 090 6498550