independent

Thursday 20 June 2019

Aiken raid unsolved for over two years

Gardai continue to investigate the theft of oil tanker, but the trail is cold and no-one has been charged

Damaged gate at Aiken Barracks, Dundalk
Damaged gate at Aiken Barracks, Dundalk

Anne Campbell

The Defence Forces' Military Police investigation into the theft of a tanker of laundered fuel from Aiken Barracks two years ago has been completed, but action on it remains outstanding while the Gardai continue to hunt the thieves.

No-one has been charged in connection with one of the most audacious crimes ever committed in Dundalk - on May 26 2013 theft of a tanker, loaded with an estimated 20,000 litres laundered fuel, that was sprung out of Aiken Barracks after it had been put there for safe-keeping following a raid by Revenue.

Security at the Dundalk base was stepped up in the wake of the dauntless incident and the Argus can now reveal that a Military Police investigation into the incident has been completed and a report is with the General Office Commanding (GOC) at Brigade headquarters where is it currently 'under consideration/review'.

A Defence Forces spokesperson said: 'Because the Garda investigation is ongoing, there has been no action taken and that will have to be considered by the GOC. Security was reviewed and increased in the aftermath of the theft at Aiken Barracks'.

The shocking incident at one of the most secure military bases in the country sparked major investigations by Gardaí and the army as officers tried to work out how a fuel lorry was sprung from the base.

The Defence Forces were left red-faced after the 2 a.m. raid on Aiken Barracks when the truck was driven past armed soldiers and smashed through the metal front gates.

Revenue officials had stored the Northern registered Scania 124L lorry, registration WLZ 2949, at the base after they smashed a major fuel-laundering plant in Co. Monaghan the previous Wednesday.

The fuel raid was the biggest oil laundry found in the State in 2013 and was capable of washing 15 million litres of fuel per year. But someone managed to get onto the grounds of the 27th Infantry barracks and started up the truck, driving it on the base before smashing through the main entrance.

Irish Independent

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