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15 Aug 2022

€8.5 million of cocaine landed in Midlands by plane

Cocaine

Pictured released by Garda HQ

Gardaí have seized over €8.5 million worth of cocaine which was flown in to Co Longford on a private plane.

The station is also reporting that two cars were stopped in Westmeath with two men arrested. A plane has also been seized.

The Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau is reported to have led the operation.

Gardaí confirmed they carried out an operation on Thursday, August 4, as a result of ongoing investigations targeting drug related organised crime activity under Operation Tara.

They said personnel attached to the Garda National Drugs & Organised Crime Bureau supported by other national units, intercepted two vehicles, shortly after 6pm, at two locations in the Lough Owel area of Co. Westmeath.

"In the course of this operation, 120 kilogrammes of cocaine with an estimated street value of €8.4 million (subject to analysis) was recovered along with several communications devices. Follow up searches were conducted at residential premises in Naas, Co Kildare and Waterford City, and at a commercial airfield in Co. Longford where a light aircraft has been seized," said the statement.

The guards said two men, age 54 and 40 years, were arrested on suspicion of drug trafficking contrary to section 15 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977 and were detained, pursuant to the provisions of section 2 of Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act, 1996, at Ashbourne Garda Station, Dublin.

Following the operation Assistant Commissioner Justin Kelly, the Head of Organised and Serious Crime said " This operation has prevented a considerable quantity of dangerous drugs from making it onto our streets and causing significant harm to our communities. An Garda Síochána is committed, under Operation Tara, to disrupting and dismantling the organised criminal networks who profit from drug trafficking and impact so negatively on our society”.

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