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Four arrests in early morning garda raid on Traveller site in Blackrock

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The garda raid at the Blackrock Traveller site this morning

The garda raid at the Blackrock Traveller site this morning

The Garda raid at the Blackrock Traveller Site this morning.

The Garda raid at the Blackrock Traveller Site this morning.

The Garda Raid at The Blackrock Traveller Site this morning.

The Garda Raid at The Blackrock Traveller Site this morning.

The Garda Raid at The Blackrock Traveller Site this morning. A man (light blue jumper) is arrested.

The Garda Raid at The Blackrock Traveller Site this morning. A man (light blue jumper) is arrested.

Gardai at the raid in Blackrock this morning

Gardai at the raid in Blackrock this morning

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The garda raid at the Blackrock Traveller site this morning

Gardai carried out an early morning raid at a traveller site in Dublin today as part of an investigation into a spate of burglaries in the capital.

Our exclusive photos show the scene as a dozen garda vehicles sped into the compound at 9am as a garda helicopter circled overhead.

The team were backed-up by six gardai in riot gear.

Armed detectives and uniformed officers forced their way into a number of properties and arrested four men at the site in Blackrock, south Dublin.

The four, ranging in age from their early 20s to mid 40s, were being questioned at Blackrock and Shankill Garda Stations this afternoon.

Detectives are questioning the individuals about offences such as burglary, criminal damage and public order crimes.

This morning officers also took away a large number of items in evidence bags that filled the boot of one of the garda cars.

One item seen sticking out of a bag looked like a pick-axe handle and sources have confirmed that gardai seized a number of other weapons in the raid.

Gardai also recovered stolen property which mostly consisted of electrical equipment and tools.

As gardai carried out the raid a Ford car could be seen with its windows smashed parked outside one of the houses.

The operation lasted more than half an hour, and it was the second time in recent weeks the site was targeted by gardai.

Sources have revealed that the raid had been planned for a number of days after gardai received information that there was stolen property at the location.

This morning's operation involved seven unmarked garda vehicles, five marked vehicles, the garda helicopter and more than 20 garda personnel including armed officers.

The mission was carried out under Operation Acer, which is a Dublin investigation in conjuction with the wider Operation Fiacla targeting burglars.

Operation Acer began in March 2012 to provide a targeted approach to arresting criminals involved in burglaries and related offences in the Dublin region.

Both Operation Acer and Fiacla have resulted in numerous arrests and the recovery of stolen goods.

Earlier this month in a separate operation, gardai in Dublin arrested 26 people as part of a crackdown on criminals committing burglaries.

Six searches were carried out in what gardai called "a day of action" and 11 people were arrested for burglary-related incidents.

Five of these were charged, two returned to prison on warrants and four files were sent to the DPP.

A total of 15 others were also arrested for burglary-related incidents, not related to the operation.

Of these, seven people were charged and eight files were prepared for the DPP.

There have been a number of crime-related incidents in the location which was the focus of this morning's raid, including an incident in January of last year in which a man lost two fingers when a pipe bomb blew up in his hand.

kfoy@herald.ie


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