The Criminal Assets Bureau has trained almost 600 local 'asset profilers' to monitor the unexplained wealth of 1,800 crime bosses and lieutenants around the country, including nearly 150 in Limerick, 60 in Cork and more than 40 in Kerry.
Unsurprisingly, Dublin accounts for the greatest number of cases, with more than 750 gangland figures being targeted. CAB figures also show that a further 215 criminals are before the courts in cases taken by the bureau — bringing the total number of individuals hit to over 2,000. The Limerick division has the third-highest number of gang associates being targeted by CAB, with the Dublin West division accounting for the highest, followed by Dublin South.
Figures provided to theshow:
- A total of 1,770 persons and organisations are being investigated by CAB (by close of 2021)
- Dublin West has by far the highest number of targets (293), followed by Dublin South (188)
- Limerick has the third highest (147)
- Clare/Tipperary Division has 75 targets
- Cork City Division has 32 targets, Cork West has 14 and Cork North has 13
- Kerry has 42 targets
- Waterford has 28 targets
Some divisions have a relatively high number of cases. For example, Roscommon/Longford has 82, which could reflect a gang feud in Longford. In July 2021, CAB conducted 12 searches across the county, in an operation targeting a crime gang which seized cars, cash, and jewellery.
Louth, which has been badly hit by a particularly violent gangland feud centred in Drogheda, has 54 targets. Two other divisions with relatively high numbers are Laois/Offaly and Wexford, both with 50 suspects being investigated. Mayo has the least number of suspects (6). Of the 1,770 targets, 27 are based abroad, including senior members of the Kinahan cartel, located in the United Arab Emirates.
Some 220 of the targets — around one in eight of the total — were identified by local asset profilers. These gardaí — typically from the divisional detective unit or the divisional drug unit — are trained by CAB officers on how to identify and evaluate assets. The number of divisional asset profilers has grown considerably over the last six years — from 208 in 2016 to 473 in 2019 and to 552 at the end of last year. Since then, that number has further increased to 585 by April of this year.
Local detectives and gardaí attached to drug units are trained by the Criminal Assets Bureau to be their “eyes and ears” on the ground.
They identify gangland suspects and gather intelligence on their wealth, whether it is properties being extensively refurbished, and often repeatedly refurbished, new or luxury cars, top-of-the-range clothes, and jewellery, or regular foreign travel.
CAB says the work of these divisional profilers has increased its successes as it proactively continues to deny and deprive criminals of their wealth. Under the Proceeds of Crime Act, the Criminal Assets Bureau can freeze and seize assets which it shows to the High Court are the proceeds of criminal conduct.
The bureau has carried out a number of successful raids in the last 12 months seizing hundreds thousands of euro worth of goods as well as cash.
At the end of April four businesses were raided – a pub, gym tanning shop and a nail bar along with four homes which either belonged to or were connected to a target linked to a major Dublin drug gang. Those raids netted €22,000 in cash, three luxury watches and an assortment of designer handbags and clothing.
In September 2021, a raid targeting Limerick city's notorious Keane/Collopy gang seized €145,000 in cash and €421,000 in eight accounts as well as five designer watches, three luxury vehicles and ten horses including a stallion worth over €50,000.