GARDAÍ HAVE uncovered what they have described as a sophisticated cocaine factory where cocaine and dental anaesthetic with a combined street value of €2 million was seized.
Gardaí also found some €60,000 in cash at one of a number of houses searched during the operation in Dublin over the past two days.
The discovery of the operation was made when gardaí raided a house in the Cushlawn estate in Tallaght, west Dublin.
The search was part of a wider operation into the activities of two gangs involved in a feud in the suburbs of Crumlin and Drimnagh in southwest Dublin.
When the Tallaght property was raided on Thursday night, gardaí found cocaine bagged for resale. Some 60kg of lignocaine was also found with blenders and weighing scales.
Garda sources said the drugs that had already been bagged were of significantly larger quantities than street deals, which are normally sold in small bags for about €80.
The stuff was going to be sold on to somebody else who would cut it down again for selling to users, said one source.
Gardaí initially believed the value of the find was about €200,000. However, an extensive search yielded more cocaine, bringing the total street value of the drug when mixed with the seized anaesthetic to €2 million.
Dental anaesthetics are used in the bulking-up process because they mimic some of the physical effects of cocaine use, such as numbing of the gums and throat.
Apart from the Tallaght search, a number of other properties were searched in Walkinstown in west Dublin and in Drimnagh on Thursday night. Further searches were carried out yesterday in Rathcoole and Clondalkin.
Three people, two men and a woman, were arrested on Thursday night in relation to the cocaine seizure in Tallaght.
The suspects, who are in their 30s, are being held at Kevin St and Kilmainham Garda stations under Section 2 of the Drug Trafficking Act. They were not previously known to gardaí.
Gardaí believe they are working for one of the leaders of one of the gangs involved in the Crumlin-Drimnagh feud. The gang leader spends much of his time abroad and was named as a person of interest during the investigation in Spain last month into the international drugs gang led by Dubliner Christy Kinahan (53).
Saturday, June 26, 2010