Collopy brothers caught with €50k of heroin on kitchen table
TWO criminal brothers have been caught red-handed cutting up heroin on a kitchen table.
Brian and Kieran Collopy were arrested by armed gardai who searched a home in Limerick city last night and recovered €50,000 worth of heroin.
The cache of heroin was being prepared for sale for Christmas in the city and is seen as a major blow to the Collopy criminal gang.
The outfit has been attempting to take control of the lucrative drugs trade in the mid-west region since the dismantling of the McCarthy-Dundon gang by gardai.
The search took place at a home in St Mary’s Park at 6pm yesterday. The inner city estate, known locally as the Island Field, is the stronghold of the Collopy gang.
The Herald can today reveal that last night’s arrests, jointly led by the Drugs Squad at Henry Street Garda Station and the Crime Office based at Mayorstone Garda Station, took place after nine months of intensive garda investigations.
It is understood officers discreetly kept gang members under surveillance and gardai – who earlier obtained an emergency search warrant – entered the house last night, taking the brothers by surprise and catching them in the middle of the cutting operation.
Two years ago, Brian Collopy (43) had an eight-year sentence for witness intimidation reduced by two years by the Court of Criminal Appeal.
He had been jailed for making the shape of a gun at witness Willie Moran in 2010 but had pleaded not guilty to the offence. Moran said Collopy made the shape of a gun with his hand and shouted: “Willie, you are going to get it now.” Collopy also said a serving detective in Limerick would not be able to save him.
Brian Collopy was shot twice in old Francis Street on December 20, 2006.
His home, Ashby House at Fedamore, Co Limerick, was seized by the CAB as part of a €470,000 settlement. Collopy purchased it in 2002 for more than €150,000 and paid for it in cash.
In 2011, Kieran Collopy (40) along with his brother, Damian Collopy (25), of St Ita’s Street, St Mary’s Park, Limerick, were both jailed for five years for threatening to kill Willie Moran.
The brothers believed Moran had money belonging to their late brother, Philip Collopy, who killed himself in 2009.