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Gardaí investigating if Chinese national arrested in €175k cash seizure was working with Kinahan cartel

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A stock picture of the Garda badge logo (Niall Carson/PA)

A stock picture of the Garda badge logo (Niall Carson/PA)

A stock picture of the Garda badge logo (Niall Carson/PA)

Detectives are investigating if a Chinese national arrested in a €175k cash seizure was acting as a 'bagman' for associates of the Kinahan cartel.

Nine rounds of ammunition and €100,000 worth of drugs were also seized after gardaí raided a house in the city centre on Sunday morning.

The operation was part of an intelligence-led investigation into drug dealing in Dublin.

After searching the apartment gardaí recovered €175,000 in cash, nine rounds of ammo, €70,000 worth of cocaine and around €30,000 in cannabis.

A mixing agent was also discovered inside the flat and a 35-year-old Chinese national was detained.

Detectives are now probing if the man arrested was working with associates of the Kinahan cartel in the city centre.

Gardai believe the man may have been acting as a bagman who was also used to store cash and drugs before they were moved along the criminal chain.

He is being held at Mountjoy Garda Station under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act.

He can be held for up to seven days.

The investigation was led by members of the Special Crime Task Force (SCTF), backed up by the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau (DOCB).

It is the latest success for the SCTF, despite a depletion in the unit's numbers since it was established.

First launched in the summer of 2016 following the outbreak of the Hutch/Kinahan feud, the unit had 44 members which included senior investigators and asset profilers.

However, sources have told Independent.ie that the unit is operating with less than half of the original officers.

“There are only around 20 gardaí attached to the Special Crime Task Force and yet they are still making significant seizures, which has to be acknowledged.

“The unit is, of course, being supported by the DOCB, but its own numbers have dropped in recent years,” the source said.

The SCTF have been involved in a number of drugs and firearms seizures in Dublin in recent months linked to a range of crime groups.

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