Cab gets freezing orders against suspected Limerick gang member

Man has lengthy history of involvement with crime group, Criminal Assets Bureau claims

Mr Justice Raymond Fullam ruled the couple had not discharged the onus of proving the property did not represent the proceeds of crime

Mr Justice Raymond Fullam ruled the couple had not discharged the onus of proving the property did not represent the proceeds of crime

 

A man described by gardaí as “a senior figure” in a Limerick crime gang has been ordered by the High Court not to dispose of a house in Co Tipperary.

John Tobin was also ordered not to sell a car suspected to have been acquired from proceeds of crime.

Mr Tobin has a prolonged history of involvement in criminality and is a senior figure in the Collopy-Keane organised crime group, the chief officer in the Criminal Assets Bureau (Cab) claimed.

Mr Tobin opposed the Cab’s application for orders restraining sale or disposal of the house, which cost €35,000 and on which some €70,000 was spent on renovations, and in relation to a Toyota Avensis, which cost €28,800, inclusive of trade-in.

The orders were also sought against Mr Tobin’s partner, Susan Moloney, mother of his seven children, who lives in the house.

The Cab claimed the couple have been on social welfare since 1994, while Mr Tobin claimed he was at one time involved in a rubbish removals business, which failed.

Unidentified lodgments

This was over and above €90,000 received from the Limerick Regeneration Scheme for the couple’s former family home in St Mary’s Park, Limerick, and was also exclusive of some €84,700 the couple received for six insurance claims, the Cab claimed.

Mr Tobin argued his partner was the full owner of the house and Ms Moloney claimed the purchase price came from money set aside from a compensation payment received by her, along with a €15,000 credit union loan.

The refurbishments were funded from the proceeds of the sale of St Mary’s Park, the couple claimed.

In denying the money came from proceeds of crime, Ms Moloney claimed that after St Mary’s Park was sold, she withdrew €80,000 for the refurbishment of the Tipperary property. Part of €19,000 cash found in a Garda search in May 2011 was from that withdrawal, including €8,400 found in the underwear of a young female, it was claimed. She also claimed she bought the Toyota Avensis from the St Mary’s Park proceeds.

A Cab forensic accountant said the purchase was partially financed from funds channelled through an account of her 17-year-old daughter, as well as from unknown sources and the St Mary’s Park money.

Her daughter, who had provided €4,000 for that transaction, received €11,000 compensation from a road traffic accident and claimed to have earned money from selling Avon products on Done Deal.

Proceeds of crime

Justice Raymond Fullam

After reviewing payments made in relation to purchase of the Tipperary property, the judge was satisfied some of it came from legitimate sources, including the sale of St Mary’s Park. He held Ms Moloney was therefore entitled to an 11 per cent interest in any eventual sale of the house.

He said the couple had given contradictory accounts on the source of the money to buy the house. There was no bridging loan, even though there were four months between receipt of proceeds of St Mary’s Park and completion of purchase of the Tipperary property, he said.

The Cab also told the court Mr Tobin asked a friend to allow the property to be registered in his name, because Mr Tobin claimed he did not want to use his St Mary’s Park address, as locals in Tipperary would object to any planning application by him.

Some of the purchase price, €11,500, was paid by the friend, while a convicted criminal associate of Mr Tobin’s paid €10,000 using a credit union cheque, and Mr Tobin paid €9,500, the court heard