Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Car Thefts.

139.

asked the Minister for Justice how many cars have been reported stolen in each of the last three years; how many were recovered in each of those years; and if he will give separate figures for (a) Dublin city and (b) the rest of the country.

The reply is in the form of a tabular statement which, with the permission of the Ceann Comhairle, I propose to circulate with the Official Report.

Following is the statement:

(a)DUBLIN METROPOLITAN AREA

Year

Number of mechanically propelled vehicles reported stolen

Number of mechanically propelled vehicles recorded as having been recovered

1969

7,600

7,236

1970

9,727

9,003

1/1/71 to 30/9/71

7,940

6,871

(b)REST OF THE COUNTRY

Year

Number of mechanically propelled vehicles reported stolen

Number of mechanically propelled vehicles recorded as having been recovered

1969

1,340

1,274

1970

1,868

1,829

1/1/71 to 30/9/71

1,820

1,683

NOTE: The numbers shown as recovered are regarded by the Gardaí as being considerably lower than the actual numbers recovered because in many cases where vehicles have been reported stolen they are recovered by their owners and the Gardaí are not informed.

Will the Minister not agree that cars are being stolen at an alarming rate and that there are some almost no-go areas in the city because there are not sufficient gardaí to go to those areas and apprehend the culprits? Will the Minister ensure that the strength of the Garda force is increased so that these thugs can be dealt with?

I have dealt fully with the question. I cannot accept the allegation that there are no-go areas.

Is the Minister not aware that there are areas where even two or three gardaí cannot go together because of the likelihood of being molested?

The gardaí are molested from time to time in various parts of the city but it is wrong to say that there is such an area as a no-go area.

There are such areas in parts of this city.