Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) raids on targets around the country are to be halted for the coming weeks but officers say they will be busy with the massive backlog of cases that need to be prepared for court.
While the Covid-19 virus may have halted planned searches of the homes of suspected criminals and their associates, it has freed up officers to do much-needed case work to move a glut of proceeds of crime matters before the courts.
Having time to clear the paperwork backlog is likely to mean suspected criminals, money launderers and revenue dodgers will find investigations into their activities advance to legal proceedings quicker than they would in normal circumstances.
On Monday, the monthly list was adjourned until May due to the ongoing situation as gatherings are limited and business grinds to a halt.
Many of those involved in listed cases, including those due for hearing, had failed to turn up at the courts as fears grew about coronavirus across Europe.
But instead of shutting up shop, CAB sources said officers would welcome the time to concentrate on files that have to be put together for solicitors so they can begin cases against targets.
CAB is also preparing its annual report for Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan, which is expected to show 2019 was the busiest year in it's history with record numbers of profilers now working around the country to identify potential targets.
By the beginning of 2020, the bureau had 1,367 targets on its books and has already got more than 60 cases before the courts at various stages in the process. It is in control of 45 seized properties including a house in Dublin 8 which it was granted receivership over last month and was owned by a mid-ranking member of the Kinahan cartel.
The portfolio of houses will come on the market before the end of this year and are likely to include the Raleigh Square home of Liam Byrne, which was renovated to the tune of €750,000 before the keys to the property were handed over to the bureau.