CAB targets key Kinahan associate in 'major' blow to the cartel
A key associate of the global Kinahan crime cartel, who is suspected of playing a leading role in investing a slice of the gang's huge profits from its international drug trafficking activities, is being targeted by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB).
Officers from the CAB carried out six searches in counties Dublin, Meath and Waterford yesterday in a co-ordinated strike against the target.
The man currently lives in Co Meath, but is originally from Dublin's inner city, and is relatively unknown. He is the subject of a major investigation, spearheaded by the CAB and involving national specialist Garda units.
Officers believe he is a trusted lieutenant of the leaders of the Irish section of the criminal organisation and is heavily involved in laundering the proceeds of drug trafficking in property and land.
"The CAB investigation centres on an international organised crime gang involved in the sale and supply of controlled drugs," said a Garda spokesman.
Several investments are being examined as part of the investigation.
Five residential premises and a solicitor's office in Co Waterford were searched.
Officers seized documentation which, they said, related to the ownership of assets, financial records, mobile phones and electronic storage devices, and those have been confiscated for detailed forensic examination.
A Garda spokesman described the search operation as "a significant development in the CAB investigation and will be seen as a major upset to the network used by this organised crime network to launder the proceeds of their drug-dealing activities".
Officers from CAB were backed up yesterday by members of the Garda Emergency Response Unit, the Garda Special Crime Task Force, Garda Dog Unit and Revenue dog unit. No arrests were made as this was an evidence gathering phase of the investigation.
Meanwhile, in a separate CAB operation yesterday, officers seized two vehicles in Co Limerick, a 191 registration Audi and a 182 registration Ford, under a High Court order obtained under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
The seizures were part of an investigation into the activities of a travelling crime gang based in the county.