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Pair held as cocaine worth €82k seized

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Some of the designer clothes and cash seized in the raid

Some of the designer clothes and cash seized in the raid

Some of the designer clothes and cash seized in the raid

Gardai seized around €24,000 of designer clothes and handbags after they arrested two members of a suspected Albanian crime gang who were carrying out a drugs handover on St Patrick's Day.

The suspects, aged 38 and 34, were in custody at Blanchardstown Garda Station last night following the cocaine bust carried out by the K District Community Action Team.

The suspects have been living in Ireland for several years and are based in the Dublin 15 area.

Gardai halted two vehicles stopped at Porterstown Road.

Haul

"During the course of the searches, a package containing approximately €82,600 of suspected cocaine was seized (pending analysis)," a garda spokesman said.

"Two men in their 30s were arrested at the scene and detained at Blanchardstown Garda Station under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice Drug Trafficking Act, 1996.

"Another package containing approximately €81,200 of suspected cocaine was seized (pending analysis) as well as €24,985 in cash.

"During a follow-up operation at several locations in the Dublin 15 area, gardai recovered approximately €6,000 in cash as well as designer clothing and apparel with an estimated value of €24,000," the spokesman said.

Gardai have become increasingly concerned about the activities of Albanian crime gangs.

In an operation in December, the 44-year-old head of an Albanian crime mob whose crew are suspected of being heavily involved in people and drugs-trafficking was targeted by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB).

Two high-end cars, €22,000 in cash and an expensive Swiss watch were seized during five searches in Dublin and Wicklow. In May, 2017, the Herald revealed gardai were conducting secret operations against the Albanian mafia which led to almost €1m worth of cannabis being seized.

Albanian gangsters have been laundering their cash through chippers and car wash businesses across the capital, an investigation revealed.