'They have completely destroyed the vault' - Vandals decapitate 800-year-old 'Crusader' at Dublin church

'They have completely destroyed the vault' - Vandals decapitate 800-year-old 'Crusader' at Dublin church

A Dublin church has been targeted by vandals, who decapitated an 800-year-old 'Crusader' who was in a crypt.

The incident happened over the weekend but was discovered today by a tour guide at St Michan's Church in Dublin.

The 'Crusader' that was vandalised at St Manchan's Church in Dublin
The 'Crusader' that was vandalised at St Manchan's Church in Dublin

"The culprits, whoever they are, broke into the vault. A number of our bodies were destroyed including the 800-year-old Crusader, who is quite a big tourist attraction, explained Archdeacon David Pierpoint to Philip Boucher-Hayes on RTÉ's Liveline.

The Archdeacon added he was "disgusted" by the act of vandalism.

"It's devastating for the parish, it's devastating for the community," he said.

"I was quite disgusted initially, and now just saddened by the whole thing."

"They turned his body around, they messed around it and then they severed his head, they removed his head and it disappeared," he explained.

They have completely destroyed the vault. A nun's body was also destroyed by vandals. It's pretty horrific down there, it's not a pretty sight," he added.

The tours of the site are being cancelled for the time being at the site which last year attracted around 27,000 visitors.

A spokesman for the gardai said: “Garda are investigating a break-in at St Michan’s Church on Church Street, Dublin.

“The matter was reported to gardai this afternoon. The incident is believed to have occurred between 7pm on Saturday and 8am on Sunday 24th.

“Gardai are appealing for anyone with information to contact them at Bridewell garda station on 01 666 8200.”

- Additional reporting Press Association

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