Three men charged in connection with theft of ESB power cables

Five men arrested in Rathdangan and detained at Naas and Leixlip stations


Three men will appear in court on Thursday in connection with the theft of ESB overhead power cables.

Gardaí attached to the drugs and organised crime bureau, assisted by local gardaí from Kildare and the Garda air support unit, arrested five men in Rathdangan, Co Kildare at 4.40am on Wednesday morning.

They were detained at Naas and Leixlip Garda Stations. Two have been released without charge and investigations are continuing.

The three other men have been charged and are expected to appear before the Criminal Courts of Justice in Dublin on Thursday, charged in connection with the theft of ESB overhead power lines in Rathangan.

Gardaí said investigations have been carried into the large-scale, organised theft of live electrical cable throughout the country over the past number of months. They said the method used by groups involved was to climb electrical poles and cut large amounts of copper wire over a period of several hours.

This resulted in power outages to large sections of the country and presented a serious danger to the public, resulting in millions of euro worth of damage to ESB power lines.

To date, the cost of replacing 142km of stolen power lines has been €4.6 million.