Wednesday 26 July 2017

CAB cleared to sell cars and assets worth €500k linked to Kinahan crime cartel

Liam Byrne pictured at the funeral of his brother David
Liam Byrne pictured at the funeral of his brother David

Aodhan O'Faolain

The High Court has cleared the way for the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) to sell assets including several cars worth €500,000 from 11 individuals it says are linked to the Kinahan organised crime gang.

CAB had previously secured orders from the High Court freezing the assets which includes jewelry, motorbikes and cars  which were seized by the bureau following raids at various locations in March of last year. 

The proceedings were taken against Liam Byrne, who CAB says is a member of the Kinahan gang, and several of his associates.

Mr Byrne's brother David was shot dead in the Regency Hotel in February 2016.

Following an application by CAB last month, the High Court appointed a receiver over the cars and granted orders allowing the receiver to sell the vehicles.

The court placed a stay on that order pending any application by any of the individuals linked to the assets.

The matter was mentioned before Ms Justice Carmel Stewart on Tuesday.

Remy Farrell SC, for CAB, said it is the bureau's case that the assets, which he said are worth €500,000,  are the proceeds of crime. 

The vehicles were used by the Kinahan organised crime group as currency for services and for laundering money, counsel said. They were linked to a car sales company which was a "bogus front".

The vehicles were "not of sentimental value" and were "used as assets only", counsel said.  He also said the cars had depreciated in value since they were seized by €111,000.

Several of the respondents were legally represented in court during the brief hearing. 

Lawyers acting for the respondents and parties that have been put on notice of the proceedings asked the court for time to allow them consider and respond to CAB's application. 

The court heard that some of the respondent's lawyers were awaiting instructions from their clients in regards to the matter.

Ms Justice Stewart agreed to adjourn the case to March 24 next.

This was to allow any party claiming an interest in any of the assets to file a sworn statement in respect of CAB's bid to sell the vehicles.

However, the judge said she was not prepared to allow the stay on the sale order remain in place for a lengthy period.

The judge said that the court would also deal with any application by any of the respondents for legal aid in respect of the proceedings on the adjourned

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