Saturday 14 December 2019

Dublin fraudster charged over lethal weapon haul in UK

Robert Keogh was charged after 60 guns were found in a car travelling from France to the UK
Robert Keogh was charged after 60 guns were found in a car travelling from France to the UK

An Irishman has been remanded in custody after appearing in court in connection with the discovery of 60 firearms in a car arriving in the UK from France.

Dubliner Robert Keogh (37) appeared at Margate Magistrates' Court yesterday charged with illegally importing firearms.

A spokeswoman for the court said that Keogh did not indicate a plea at the magistrates' court hearing.

Keogh was charged after UK Border Force officers stopped a Volkswagen Passat arriving at the Port of Dover from Calais on August 2 and found a Sig Sauer P226 blank-firing handgun with a barrel converted to fire live ammunition.


Subsequent searches found another 59 firearms concealed inside the car's bumper and both rear quarter panels, according to the UK's National Crime Agency.

The find is believed to be largest seizure of lethal-purpose weapons at a port in the UK.

Yesterday, the Herald revealed that in June last year Keogh, from Hazelbury Green in Clonee, was sentenced to six months in prison for taking money from football and music fans for non-existent tickets.

The court heard that the deceptions were to fund his severe gambling habit.

Keogh worked as a business analyst and was a talented GAA player, but developed a gambling addiction while recovering from an injury he suffered, Swords District Court heard.

His gambling spiralled into a "terrible addiction", causing him to lose his house, his fiancee and his job, and he became involved in selling non-existent tickets to pay his gambling debts and to get more money to gamble, his defence barrister Annette Kealy told the court.

Keogh paid the victims their money back - totalling €620.

However, he was ordered by Judge Dermot Dempsey to pay additional compensation for one victim, who had travelled to Liverpool for a soccer game but never received the tickets.

Keogh's case was sent for trial at Canterbury Crown Court, with a preliminary hearing to be held on September 2.

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