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Gardaí Target Scrap Metal Distribution

gardaA major inter-agency operation linked to a national initiative, “Operation Fiacla,” and targeting the illegal storing and distribution of scrap metal, was carried out at a number of locations yesterday, along the Tipperary/Limerick border.

A large force of Gardaí, including members of the Armed Regional Response Unit, Customs and Revenue officers, together with officials from Limerick County Council, took part in the operation. The operation also included a number of highly-visible checkpoints, set up as part of yesterday’s day-long operation in this area.

It is understood that a considerable amount of scrap metal, motor vehicles and tyres were seized from halting sites on the Limerick /Tipperary Road & from a scrap metal yard at Spitland, Old Cork Road, outside Limerick city, using a convoy of recovery trucks which worked throughout the day.

Gardaí have also confirmed that a quantity of drugs were also found during this well planned operation & latter have now been sent for forensic analysis.

While these drugs located remain unidentified, this latter information comes on the back of  a new report by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). This report indicates that Ireland remains among the biggest users of Cocaine in Europe and also names and shames Ireland as a ‘hot-bed,’ for Vietnamese and Chinese organised crime gangs, who cultivate home-grown cannabis. Ireland also tops the poll for the use of newer drugs called “Legal Highs.

The strength of the Garda National Drugs Unit, which targets gangs importing drugs into the country and distributing them, has fallen from 59 to 56, with this cut in manpower directly connected to the reduction in Garda numbers in recent years.

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