Read more news from IrishCentral on Hurricane Sandy

As New York City recovers from the effects of Hurricane Sandy there have been mounting reports of looting in areas where there are power outages and abandoned buildings.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said those found to be looting during this difficult time for New York should except exceptionally harsh punishment. Speaking in Coney Island on Thursday she asked people to do the right thing. 

“They really shouldn’t prey on their neighbors in these worst of times and anyone who is caught looting during this storm should have the book thrown at them in a way that is extreme.

“I would quite frankly say, you know, don’t even give them bail. Make them sit inside until the storm is totally gone and the power is over. That’ll teach you a lesson the next time the power goes out, because this is serious.

Read more news from IrishCentral on Hurricane Sandy

Police told the Metro that there had been commercial burglaries in Brooklyn and Queens. On Thursday Ray Kelly confirmed that there had been 18 people arrested for breaking in to Key Foods grocery store in Coney Island. Two others were arrested in Staten Island.

The Huffington Post reported that in Coney Island looters hit banks, among other businesses. The also reported that the looters were boasting about their booty on Twitter as well as planning their attacks.

@StevenGazz tweeted, “Last night even Momma got outta her house to loot me a new shirt.. Luv you Momma #Sandy #SandyLootCrew” 

Looting was a problem after Hurricane Irene last year and Hurricane Katrina, in New Orleans, in 2005.

Read more news from IrishCentral on Hurricane Sandy