File being prepared for Garda Youth Diversion Programme for teen who broke into Dáil Éireann

A teenage boy who was arrested yesterday on suspicion of trespassing at Leinster House has been released without charge by gardaí.

At approximately 4pm on Saturday, gardaí at Pearse Street station were altered to the incident at the Houses of the Oireachtas, on Kildare Street.

It is understood some damage was caused to flags and paintings inside the Dáil chamber.

Investigators said yesterday evening that a “juvenile teenager” was detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984 at a garda station in south central Dublin.

A Garda spokesperson confirmed this afternoon that: “The male juvenile teenager has been released without charge and a file is being prepared for the Garda Youth Diversion Programme.”

Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell has described the break-in at Leinster House as a “very worrying incident” and said it requires a “thorough investigation”.

The security at Government Buildings is managed by a combination of Oireachtas ushers, gardaí and armed Military Police and the “security of the building is not usually called into question”, said Mr Farrell.

“To my knowledge, An Garda Síochána are normally stationed on the perimeter with Military Police on the premises at all times – supplemented by the ushers during the parliamentary week,” he told RTÉ’s This Week programme.

“So certainly, it warrants a thorough investigation and if that calls for increased security, well I’m sure that will be provided.”

The responsibility for maintaining security at the Houses of the Oireachtas falls under the remit of the complex’s superintendent. Mr Farrell said the vacant superintendent position has been filled, but the new appointee does not take up the role until “later in the summer”.

He said given the size of Leinster House, “the more personnel assigned to this role the better”.

“It’s very concerning to hear that an individual is actually able to gain access to the premises. It’s quite something else to jump a fence or a metal railing from either the museum or the library side, but to gain access to the building itself, is very worrying and I’m not sure that the superintendent would have been able to prevent that,” he added.

The Houses of the Oireachtas are currently under recess until June 13.

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