Viagra tablets and cash siezed in CAB Raids

The Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) have carried out eight searches in Co Monaghan as part of a garda operation on an organised crime gang.

Assisted by the Emergency Response Unit (ERU), six searches were carried out at residential addresses and two at professional addresses today.

A sum of cash in sterling and euro, worth approximately €10,000, was seized.

A quantity of documents and electronic devices including mobile phones were seized for analysis.

Viagra tablets were also found, as well as evidence of illicit tobacco and alcohol smuggling.

The raids are part of an investigation into a gang operating in the border region with Northern Ireland and who are heavily involved in the importation and distribution of illegal cigarettes and counterfeit goods.

No arrests have been made and investigations are ongoing.

On Wednesday morning, Ireland’s Criminal Assets Bureau  carried out a search operation in Monaghan. Eight searches were conducted in total throughout the operation — six at residential addresses and two at professional addresses.

Cash, in both sterling and euro, to the value of approximately €10,000, was seized as part of the operation. A quantity of documents and electronic devices including mobile phones were also seized for analysis. An unspecified quantity of Viagra tablets, and evidence of illicit tobacco and alcohol smuggling was seized.

According to a spokesperson for An Garda Síochána, the operation centres on an Organised Crime Gang operating in the border region with Northern Ireland who are heavily involved in the importation and distribution of illegal cigarettes and counterfeit goods

Eight searches were carried out this morning by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) and the Emergency Response Unit at six homes and two businesses.

Cash – both sterling and euro – worth €10,000, documents and mobile phones were seized, along with Viagra tablets and evidence of tobacco and alcohol smuggling.

Gardaí believe the gang are “heavily involved” in the importation and distribution of illegal cigarettes and counterfeit goods.

No arrests have been made, and gardaí say their investigations are continuing.

“This operation centres on an organised crime gang operating in the border region with Northern Ireland,” a Garda statement said of the Cab operation. “They are heavily involved in the importation and distribution of illegal cigarettes and counterfeit goods. No arrests have been made and investigations are continuing.”

The main target of the operation is from the North and is from a well known IRA family, several of whom were shot dead during the Troubles by the British security services.

Now a middle aged man he served a prison sentence related to cigarette smuggling after the Troubles ended. He also served a lengthy jail term for his role in an IRA bombing attack on loyalist targets.

Regarded as a dissident Republican who did not commit to the peace process, gardaí believe he was a prominent member of the Real IRA.

While many of his peers in the Provisional IRA were killed during the Troubles, two men particularly close to him died at the hands of the RUC and SAS during alleged shoot to kill incidents during the 1980s and into the 1990s.

During his many years of involvement in cross-border smuggling, the suspect has always located himself and his illegal fuel and cigarettes very close to the border. That has frustrated the inquiries into the activities he has been engaged in as he lives just over the border in the North but runs his smuggling business from yards that go into the Republic.

As well as being heavily involved in smuggling duty free and counterfeit cigarettes from Eastern Europe and Asia and trading in Viagra and alcohol, he has also been heavily involved in the illicit fuel sector. This involves laundering the marker out of agricultural diesel for sale to unsuspecting motorists.

The suspect was not arrested during the searches and spends most of his time in south Armagh.

However, Garda sources said the Criminal Assets Bureau inquiry aimed to confiscate his wealth. Assets recovery officers in the UK are working closely with Cab to find what the man owns in both Ireland and Britain, with a very lengthy investigation anticipated.

Reference

Irishtimes Report

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