“Huge progress” has been tackling organised crime under Justice Minister Helen McEntee, Leo Varadkar has said.
Minister McEntee is also overseeing the passage of controversial hate crime legislation through the Oireachtas and the Taoiseach said he did not believe the bill had distracted his Justice Minister from more important issues.
“Minister McEntee has a number of major priorities in her brief,” he told Newstalk Breakfast.
“One has been to restart Garda recruitment and increase Garda numbers again
“She secured the biggest ever budget for the Gardaí - over €2 billion this year.
“The Gardaí have made huge progress in the last year or two, particularly when it comes to organised crimes.
“You know those ‘awful gangland murders’ are less common than they were and you know, that's because of the really good work.”
The Taoiseach also said he feels safe walking through the inner city at night-time - but conceded his life is very different from other people’s.
“I do and I have,” he said.
“But I’m conscious that for me, it is maybe not the same lived experience other people have.
“I'm six foot three and I do have the benefit of Garda protection, so you know it's not the same lived experience that the other people may have.
“You know, I live in Dublin City; I'm regularly in all parts of the city and while I do witness anti-social behaviour and I have seen crimes take place, I don't feel less safe in Dublin than I would in New York or London or Paris or any other city.”
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Main image: Leo Varadkar and Justice Minister Helen McEntee. Credit: RollingNews.ie/Alamy Live News