Two Irish men have been charged in the UK with serious offences including conspiring to import drugs and weapons.
A third Irish man (61) arrested in Dublin yesterday as part of a joint operation between the Garda and the UK's National Crime Agency (NCA) was released this morning. A file on his alleged involvement with organised crime offences will be sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Gary Vickery (36) of Tamworth, Staffordshire in the UK and Daniel Canning (41) from Walkinstown, Dublin, were arrested by NCA officers in Staffordshire on Tuesday as part of a large scale investigation into the Kinahan gang's activities in both countries.
The arrests relate to the seizure of 220kg of cannabis and 15kg of cocaine, worth in excess of €5 million, as well as £250,000 in cash and a handgun and ammunition at the UK port city of Dover in October 2017.
The two men charged on Tuesday are accused of conspiracy to import “class A and B drugs”, conspiracy to import firearms, possession of firearms and ammunition for sale or transfer, and money laundering. They will appear at Cannock Magistrates’ Court on January 10th, 2020.
Another man, also believed to be Irish, remains in UK custody for questioning in relation to the matter.
On Tuesday detectives from the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigations (GNBCI) arrested a 61 year old man in Finglas, Dublin in connection with the Dover operation.
Assistant Commissioner, John O'Driscoll who heads Special Crime Operations within An Garda Síochána said the garda has "forged a very powerful working relationship with the UK's National Crime Agency, which is assisting in ensuring that communities in the UK and Ireland are better protected from organised crime".
The investigation is being supported by law enforcement partners in Ireland and internationally.
Tudor Thomas of the NCA said: "This investigation has involved close co-operation with our colleagues at An Garda Síochána, and these charges mark an important development in that.
“We are determined to work together to target suspected organised criminality impacting communities on both sides of the Irish Sea.”