ARMED detectives patrolled city streets in Dublin last night after an escalating gang war resulted in a hand grenade attack on a family home.
Gardaí are preparing for retaliatory attacks between the Crumlin and Drimnagh gangs, a feud that has claimed 10 lives since 2000.
On Saturday, a hand grenade was thrown through the front door of a house on Knocknarea Avenue, Drimnagh. There were four adults, a teenager and a six-year-old boy in the home when the attack happened at 2.20am.
The grenade exploded sending shrapnel into the ceiling of an upstairs bedroom. It also damaged the hall and living room. Gardaí said none of the people in the house were injured and it is believed the intended target of the attack was elsewhere when the blast occurred.
Indentations in the walls of the home from the grenade fragments were yesterday described as "bullet-like", according to reports.
The Garda Press Office said a red Fiat Punto was used in the attack.
"It pulled up to the house and a male ran to the front door, threw a rock in the window of the front door, breaking the glass, and then threw in an explosive device," read a statement.
The Fiat Punto was later found burned out on Sperrin Road nearby shortly after the incident.
The grenade explosion is the latest sinister development in the escalating gang feud.
Gardaí believe the attack was linked to two shootings earlier last week where a grandmother in her 50s was shot and injured in the shoulder.
The home of one organised crime leader’s grandparents was also fired on.
It is feared that innocent relatives, including parents or even children of gang members, are now being seen as legitimate targets in the violent turf feud.
One gang has links to dissident Republicans and is thought to have easy access to guns and pipe bombs.
Gardaí are believed to have carried out dawn raids late last week, involving teams of detectives searching homes and apartments used by gang members and associates.
Weekend reports said the leader of one of the gangs, well known to gardaí, had fled the country for Spain.