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CAB carry out 23 searches linked to drug trafficking gang

The Criminal Assets Bureau has carried out 23 searches in Dublin and Donegal as part of a major investigation into an international drug trafficking gang.

Gardaí say the gang deals cocaine in Ireland, Scotland and Spain and the main target who is in his 30s lives in the United Arab Emirates.

CAB is targeting his luxury home in the Milford area of Donegal which is estimated to be worth over €1 million.

They also seized a high-value car and froze over €73,000 in a bank account.

The CAB investigation into the activities of the major international Irish drug dealer has been going on for over a year.

It commenced on foot of a series of so-called good citizen reports where people report suspicious activity and unexplained wealth in their communities.

A number of people in and around a rural area in Milford in Donegal noticed a luxury house being built on a large tract of land in the locality which was expensively fitted out in marble, with ensuite rooms.

Gardaí attached to the Milford District were involved in the searches

Divisional Asset Profilers in Donegal also began working on the case, building up a profile of the man who owned the house.

The drug dealer and his family live in Dubai but kept a 2023 Volvo XC90 in the driveway for when they spent time in Ireland.

The man is in his 30s and is known to gardaí who say he has increased his wealth and stature in organised crime through drug dealing.

As well as supplying cocaine in Ireland, the organised crime gang also has connections and trafficked drugs in Scotland and Spain and has now become a target of international law enforcement agencies.

It operates a different drug trafficking and money laundering network from that of the Kinahan Organised Crime Group whose leaders are also based in Dubai.

Over 70 officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau, along with gardaí attached to the Milford District, the Donegal Division, the Regional Armed Support Unit, Garda Dog Unit and the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau began a series of searches in Dublin and Donegal at 6am.

CAB brought a quantity surveyor with them to assess the value of the house in Donegal and the quantity and value of the materials put into it.

The house of an associate in Dublin was also searched along with financial and legal offices, solicitors and accountants and service providers such as builders’ yards.

A large amount of financial documentation was seized along with electronic devices, mobile phones and laptops which will be forensically examined as part of the CAB assets inquiry.

CAB estimates it has so far identified over a million Euro worth of assets linked to the drug dealer and his family.

In a statement, gardaí said: “Today’s searches relate to an ongoing investigation into the assets of persons suspected of being involved in drug trafficking on an international level.

“The search operation was conducted as part of an ongoing proceeds of crime investigation targeting assets, including real estate, deriving in whole or in part from the proceeds of criminal activity.”

Gardaí also say criminals have been increasingly trying to launder money through homes and CAB is identifying and targeting more property as the proceeds of crime.

CAB sold the home in Cabra in Dublin, of his drug dealer brother Christopher Waldron, for over €280,000

Earlier this week a three-bedroom semi-detached bungalow it seized in Newbridge which had a guide price of €150,000 sold for €246,000.

It was handed over to CAB by Patrick Wall who CAB said was part of the ‘Pale Miley’ criminal organisation, one of the country’s most prolific burglary gangs.

CAB has also in the last two months seized three houses in Dublin and Kildare from the Dublin drug dealer David Waldron which cost him €3.3m to buy and renovate.

It also sold the home in Cabra in Dublin, of his drug dealer brother Christopher Waldron, for over €280,000.

The Waldron brothers have been linked to drugs and organised crime in Finglas in Dublin for years.

CAB has also recently sold three properties seized from Ross Browning, a senior Kinahan gang member who attended Daniel Kinahan’s lavish wedding in Dubai in 2017.

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