herald

Tuesday 24 April 2018

Madness on the N7 as gang wreaks havoc 'in bid to flee gardai after foiled burglary'

Collision on the N7
Collision on the N7

Three teenagers linked to a notorious burglary gang were being questioned last night by gardai after causing mayhem on one of Ireland's busiest motorways.

The youths, aged between 14 and 17, were detained after their car crashed into another vehicle on the N7 yesterday afternoon.

A fourth occupant of the car suffered serious injuries in the collision, which happened shortly after it was stopped by gardai.

It is understood that members of An Garda Siochana's armed anti-burglary unit pulled over the silver Ford Mondeo on the Naas Road at about 3.45pm.

The car initially stopped for gardai, but when approached it took off a speed in the direction of Dublin with its doors wide open. The Mondeo swerved towards the left as if it was leaving the dual carriageway via the exit road, but at the last minute it pulled back in.

The car then crashed into the central reservation at the Johnstown junction and hit a Honda jeep. It was at this stage that one of the passengers was thrown out of the vehicle. The teenager suffered serious injuries and was taken by ambulance to Tallaght Hospital.

The driver of the Honda was taken to Naas Hospital with minor injuries. The three other occupants of the Mondeo were arrested during follow-up searches near the crash site a short time later.

Disturbed

All three were last night detained for questioning at Naas Garda Station.

It is believed that the four males have links to the 'Pale Miley' Connors organised crime gang, based in Tallaght.

The occupants of the car are said to have been involved in a foiled burglary around an hour before the crash. A source said they were disturbed while trying to break into a house in Athy, Co Kildare, at about 3pm.

A badly damaged Honda jeep
A badly damaged Honda jeep

The intruders fled from the scene in two waiting cars when the occupants of the house returned home.

The Herald understands that a female was one of the gang who fled the scene and was in a second car which not involved in the motorway collision.

A dispatch was then sent out and gardai from Harcourt Square travelled towards Co Kildare in an attempt to catch the suspected burglars as they made their getaway.

The incident resulted in lengthy tailbacks on the N7, causing significant delays.

The scene of the collision was examined and diversions were put in place. The crash was also referred to the Garda Siochana Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) for investigation.

It happened on the same day the Herald revealed that two ruthless Traveller burglary gangs had joined forces to form an "unholy alliance" of dozens of male and female family members who were wreaking havoc across the country.

The gangs are known to use young women relatives as highspeed getaway drivers, and the south Dublin outfit is largely made up of teenagers, with some as young as 14.

The 'Pale Miley' outfit is one of the country's most notorious organised gangs.

In 2013, the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) seized almost €1m from the gang on suspicion of it being behind a nationwide spree of burglaries and distraction thefts. They has been under investigation by CAB since 2010.

CAB identified a network of bank accounts, with a total balance of more than €950,000, and secured a series of successes against the gang in the High Court.

GSOC is also appealing for witnesses to yesterday's incident to come forward.

Collision

A spokesperson said: "GSOC would like to hear from motorists who may have dash-cam footage of events surrounding a collision on the northbound section of the motorway near junction 8 (Johnstown) at 3.40pm.

"While the incident, involving a number of cars, happened on the northbound carriageway, motorists travelling in the opp- osite direction may also be in a position to help.

"Potential witnesses and those who have dash-cams and were in the area between 3.30pm and 3.50pm are asked to ring 1890 600800."

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