Two bank staff resign after probe into €7.2m tiger raid
TWO employees have left the Bank of Ireland following an internal investigation into the security breakdown which resulted in a record €7.2m haul being stolen during a tiger kidnap.
The inquiry, which lasted several months, pinpointed several failures in the internal security procedures and regulations have now been tightened up in a bid to prevent further robberies.
The outcome of the investigation was disclosed last night as gardai continued to question a young Bank of Ireland official who was arrested as part of their inquiries into the biggest bank heist in the history of the State.
The arrest, which was revealed yesterday by the Irish Independent, followed a detailed investigation by gardai from the Kildare division and detectives from several national units.
Officers detained the suspect on Thursday morning and he was taken to Naas garda station, headquarters of the hunt for the raiders.
He was still being held last night under the Offences Against the State Act.
Gardai were expected to make an application to a special sitting of the district court to extend his detention for a further 24 hours.
He can be held for a maximum of 72 hours without charge.
The investigating team, meanwhile, held a conference at Naas yesterday afternoon to review progress in the case and examine the possibility that there could have been "inside information" available to the gang as they were planning their carefully orchestrated tiger kidnap.
The haul from the Bank of Ireland branch at College Green on February 27 last was far greater than the combined total proceeds of all other tiger kidnaps in the State last year.
The extent of the haul and the failure of the bank to notify the gardai in accordance with agreed procedures led to an emergency meeting between senior garda officers and representatives of the nine main financial institutions in early March.
The meeting agreed to:
- A reduction in the number of staff who have access to cash vaults.
- Setting up a management oversight layer to ensure that staff adhere to security procedures.
- Improved communications channels to emphasise the importance of the security protocols to the safety of the staff.
These measures are intended to prevent a repeat of the embarrassing security lapse, which allowed the gang make off with €7.2m after officials stuffed four bags with euro notes of large denominations.
The size of the haul also seemed to surprise the gang and gardai recovered €1.8m of the loot in swoops on cars and houses within hours of the kidnap and detained several suspects for questioning.
The rest of the cash has not been recovered.