Heavily armed gardai raided a business suspected of laundering money for a major Munster organised crime gang.
Members of the Emergency Response Unit (ERU) used specialist equipment to cut through the fence of the Limerick car business as part of an early morning CAB raid yesterday.
Vehicles were seized from the premises, which is at the centre of a significant garda investigation into a Limerick-based criminal group.
The operation has been ongoing for several months and saw eight premises across three counties searched.
It was part of an investigation that focused on eight locations, which saw officers seize:
• A total of 115 vehicles.
• Cash including €43,000 and £1,000 (€1,170).
• One Rolex watch.
An account with €30,000 in it was frozen.
Images of the raid show an ERU officer cutting through the front gate of a car business while other armed members have their weapons drawn.
Several transport vehicles were used to take the 115 cars seized, which included luxury Mercedes and BMW models.
The multi-agency operation saw the CAB supported by the ERU, the National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau, the Stolen Motor Vehicle Investigation Unit, the Garda Technical Bureau and the Garda Dog Unit.
The main target of the oper- ation is a Limerick-based organised crime group, with a number of properties in the county searched.
Other businesses were also searched in Tipperary and Dublin as part of the probe.
Two residential premises, two business premises - car sales outlets - and four professional premises were searched.
Documentation in relation to the ownership of assets, fin- ancial details, mobile phones and electronic storage devices was also seized.
Gardai said the gang targeted was suspected of being involved in laundering the proceeds of its criminal conduct through a car sales outlet in Limerick city.
The bank account held by one car sales business was restrained by a court order under the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Act.
However, no arrests were made yesterday.
A serving garda and a businessman have previously been arrested as part of the investigation.