Saturday 18 November 2017

Three quizzed over 'tiger kidnapping' robbery

Three men were being questioned today about a €200,000 "tiger kidnapping" robbery that sparked a row between gardai and bankers over security protocols.

Detectives investigating the robbery at the Allied Irish Banks Crumlin Cross branch in Dublin arrested two men, aged 23 and 38, outside an apartment block off the River Road in Finglas late last night.

It is understood around €30,000 was recovered from a car they were travelling in at around 11pm.

A man in his seventies was also arrested during follow-up searches.

All three men are being held under section 50 of the Criminal Justice Act at Finglas Garda station.

Justice Minister Dermot Ahern, who demanded a report from his officials on Tuesday's robbery, praised gardai for last night's operation.

"I understand that a sizeable sum of money has been identified as being part of the proceeds of that incident," he said.

But he again hit out at AIB for its security measures at the branch.

"The position remains that agreed protocols - designed first and foremost to ensure bank staff safety - do not appear to have been implemented this week," he said.

"Department of Justice senior officials and senior management at the gardai have been focusing their attention this week on ensuring that the protocols are implemented at all times."

Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy was also said to be "very unhappy and disappointed" at the security lapse.

A bank clerk was at home in the Kiltipper area of Tallaght, south Dublin, on Monday night when a three-man gang, two armed with handguns, took him and his housemate hostage.

The friend was taken from the home while the bank worker was ordered to work as normal, then to take the cash and hand it over at the Red Cow roundabout at lunchtime the next day.

The alarm was not raised until the housemate was freed on the north side of Dublin.

Investigations are focusing on the gang, how the bank clerk at the AIB branch had access to a large sum of cash, and also why the bank worker or colleagues did not raise the alarm.

Bank staff are obliged to follow set protocols, which involve contacting gardai and elite detective units to track "tiger kidnap" gangs.

Press Association

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