Limerick crime clan Collopy brothers held in Bulgaria swoop
A LEADING Limerick criminal and his brother were arrested in Bulgaria yesterday following a two-year chase across Europe.
Vincent and Jonathan Collopy, from St Mary's Park, Limerick, were arrested by police in Bulgaria at a resort complex on the Black Sea.
Seven handguns, ammunition, a cache of drugs and an estimated €30,000 in cash was also recovered by police as part of the arrest operation.
Vincent Collopy (33) has been on the run since 2010 after two of his brothers threatened to kill a former associate.
Yesterday evening, police in Bulgaria surrounded the brothers' hideout at Sunny Beach -- the biggest sea resort in the country where the pair were cornered and arrested.
The Irish Independent understands a European Arrest Warrant was issued for Vincent Collopy as part of a garda investigation and it is expected that he will be extradited back to Ireland.
Jonathan Collopy (25) could yet face charges in Bulgaria following yesterday's seizure.
The pair were arrested in the Czech Republic 10 days ago, but were later released.
Previously, Vincent Collopy narrowly escaped arrest in Manchester shortly after he fled Limerick.
Both brothers, who come from a well-known criminal gang in Limerick, were jailed in 2006 for three years each after they were caught selling cocaine and heroin to undercover gardai.
Last May, Kieran Collopy (35) and Damian Collopy (21), of St Ita's Street, St Mary's Park, Limerick, were both jailed for five years for threatening to kill Willie Moran a former associate.
The brothers believed Moran had money belonging to their late brother -- Philip Collopy.
On April 14, 2010, Kieran Collopy warned Moran that he better have "four or five grand by the end of the night" and shouted "I hope you are prepared to die" before striking Mr Moran in the jaw.