Just two families behind large number of rural raids in Ireland
Gardai believe that two extended families are behind a 'significant proportion' of rural crime in Ireland.
The revelation comes in the wake of the sentencing of seven men who terrorised a Tipperary family during a home invasion robbery in 2013.
They were suspected to have carried out dozens of raids around Ireland before they were caught
In a report on Independent.ie it is revealed that gardai now believe that just two extended families are reponsible for a large number of the robberies and burglaries in rural Ireland.
One, based in Tallaght, is led by a notorious gangster in his late 40s who has been involved in serious crime for decades.
This gang usually work with four people, with one waiting in a high powered car with fake plates while the other three rob the premises.
A source told the paper: "On several occasions, gang members have openly challenged the gardaí when they arrived on the scene. They show no fear and they have broken up cars and threatened to kill.
"Then they get in their cars and speed off and we have no chance of catching them. On a few occasions, they have driven off and then stopped to threaten the pursuing squad cars.
"Mostly this crowd are looking for jewellery, gold, cash and safes which they sell off through a network of shops. But they also break into shops and business premises, often cleaning the place out."
The other family are from Kildare and according to the report they use a number of illegal halting sites to store stolen goods, cars and weapons.
They are suspected of involvement in crimes in every county on the island of Ireland and even though some members of the family are in jail or up before the courts, they continue to operate.
Both gangs use high-powered cars to make good their escpaes and they even use high-tech equipment like signal jammers and night-vision goggles to commit the crimes.
"A number of times members have lost them because they turn off their lights and speed off on country roads at 100mph using night goggles," a source tells the paper.