Wednesday 28 September 2016

How gardaí found 'inside man' behind hundreds of robberies

Paul Williams and Darragh McCullough

Published 02/08/2016 | 02:30

Gardai are hopeful that the bust is the beginning of the end of the gang's reign of terror. Stock picture
Gardai are hopeful that the bust is the beginning of the end of the gang's reign of terror. Stock picture

GardaÍ have smashed a rural crime gang behind hundreds of thefts and identified a farming 'insider' who was supplying information to them.

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The key informant of the criminal gang was identified from phone records belonging to gang members.

The gang's contact had access to farmers' yards, including access codes and locations of keys and locks for gates.

Gardai are hopeful that the bust is the beginning of the end of the gang's reign of terror.

More than 100 robberies are believed to be linked with the gang, who had been stealing to order from a base in Co Laois.

Three men have been charged as part of the same operation.

Dairy farmer Michael Hackett was one of those targeted and had over €2,000 worth of equipment stolen.

"It was clear that they had us under surveillance before they came," he said. "They knew exactly what they were looking for and left everything else, it was clearly being stolen to order."

Irish Independent

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