Wednesday, 22 November 1978
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Harte: asked the Minister for Justice if it is a fact that certain business concerns in Dublin are being forced to pay protection money to criminal gangs: and, if so, the action being taken to stamp out such nefarious practice.
Mr. G. Collins: I am informed by the Garda authorities that they have received one report of an alleged attempt to extort money from the staff of an amusement arcade and that they are carrying out an investigation. I am informed that, apart from that case, on which they have as yet come to no con clusion, they have no evidence that  business people in Dublin or elsewhere in the country are being intimidated or forced to pay protection money.
Mr. Keating: Does the Minister know if any Deputy is willing to forward to him evidence, circumstantial or otherwise, that a protection racket is operating in Dublin, and if so would he be willing to investigate it?
Mr. G. Collins: As I said, I have been informed by the Garda authorities that they have received only one report of an alleged attempt to extort money and they are investigating that now. If any person has any information that will help the Garda to carry out any investigation in this matter it will be very welcome.
Mr. G. Collins: If any Deputy or anybody else has any information that would be of any use to the Garda in investigating such a charge, they would be very welcome to give it to the Garda. If Deputy Harte has information or knows of anything that can help the Garda in any way and would substantiate these  allegations he is making here this afternoon——
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