An African migrant who was arrested after a passenger was stabbed at Dublin Airport may have been “aggrieved” because he was in a dispute with welfare agencies over payments and support, Gardai sources have said.
While the Irish Times reported that the man was living here for more than a decade, other later reports say that “gardaí believe that the suspect recently arrived in the country and may have been living rough”.
“One theory being examined, according to sources, is that he was in the airport looking for accommodation and help and may have interacted with state officials in the hours before the stabbing occurred,” the Journal reports.
Earlier, the Irish Times had said that “Gardaí are trying to establish if a man suspected of stabbing a passenger at Dublin Airport was aggrieved because of a dispute he was having with State agencies over social welfare payments or other benefits.”
The attacker was armed with a penknife and attacked another man who was not known to him, stabbing the victim, who was in his 50s, seven times, with injuries to the neck and abdomen.
The attacker is said to have “lunged” at the victim, without warning as he smoked a cigarette outside Terminal 1 in Dublin Airport. The victim was rushed to Beaumont Hospital after receiving assistance from Emergency Services at the Airport.
The random attack was witnessed by horrified onlookers, some of whom posted footage reportedly of the attack online.
“One Garda source said there was relief the knife attack did not result in more than one person being stabbed,” the Irish Times said.
Gardaí said that they are investigating an incident “that occurred outside Terminal 1 of Dublin Airport, Co. Dublin, at approximately 11.30am today, Sunday 17th September 2023.”
They also said that a “second male (50s) was arrested at the scene and is currently detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984, at a Garda station in the North Dublin area.”
“Any pedestrians or road users who were in the vicinity of Terminal 1 between 11am and 11.45am this morning, Sunday 17th September 2023, and who may have camera footage (including dash cam) are asked to make this available to investigating Gardaí,” they said.
There were shocked reactions online after the attack and stabbing became known.
“Shocking random attack at Dublin Airport yesterday. Breakdown of law and order in Ireland now a very serious issue. Sadly the Justice Minister is more interested in policing social media than keeping people safe,” said one commentator.
Broadcaster Niall Boylan said that he hoped the victim was okay and that the perpetrator got the justice deserved,
Gardai investigating stabbing at Dublin airport believe it was 'random attack'. Absolutely shocking story and hopefully the victim is ok and the perpetrator gets the justice deserved. https://t.co/pOshaE5yuk
— Niall Boylan (@Niall_Boylan) September 17, 2023