herald

Saturday 21 July 2018

Gardai seize €2.7m of cannabis plants in warehouse raid

The scene that greetedgardai when they raided the suspected grow house in Coolock
The scene that greetedgardai when they raided the suspected grow house in Coolock

Gardai have seized €2.7m of cannabis after raiding a suspected grow house in north Dublin.

The planned operation was carried out yesterday morning after officers received intelligence about a warehouse in Belcamp Lane, Coolock.

Gardai raided the premises and discovered €2.7m of cannabis plants, which were at various stages of growth.

A Vietnamese national aged in his 50s was arrested and was last night being questioned at Coolock Garda Station under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act 1996.

He can be detained for up to seven days.

Sources told the Herald that the man was suspected of being used by a criminal gang to cultivate the drugs.

"As is a regular occurrence, the individual arrested isn't the main head in the operation, and was being used to grow and look after the drugs in this warehouse," one source said.

The scene remained sealed-off yesterday as gardai carried out further examinations.

A garda spokesman confirmed that the search was part of a "planned operation".

Bust

Yesterday's raid is the latest significant bust against grow house operations in the Leinster area.

A suspected grow house "kingpin" was recently arrested after a lengthy garda probe into the cultivation of drugs in Dublin and Kildare.

The suspect is a veteran criminal, who sources described as being "one of the country's top line managers of grow houses".

In one drugs bust linked to the criminal, some €500,000 of cannabis was seized in a grow house.

After gaining entry to the property, gardai discovered a "sophisticated grow house in operation" containing 826 cannabis plants.

A day earlier, around €750,000 of cannabis was discovered in a property in Co Kildare. The following day another grow house linked to the "major player" was found in south Dublin.

Sources say the man then spent more than six months on the run before being tracked down to an address in Kildare town, where he was arrested.

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