Kinahan cartel criminal seen 'flashing the cash' before huge garda bust
A 23-year-old criminal, arrested by gardai investigating the activities of the Kinahan cartel, came to garda attention because of his lavish lifestyle.
Gardai seized an Audi A3 car, €30,000 worth of jewellery, heroin worth €3,000 and €7,000 in cash during raids in the capital's south-inner city last Thursday.
Sources said the primary target of the raids was a young criminal, originally from Crumlin, who has been "flashing the cash" in recent months.
Gardai recovered the haul at a flat in the Oliver Bond Flats complex during a planned operation that led to four properties being searched.
A watch worth €15,000 that was owned by the "flash cash" suspect was among the €30,000 of jewellery that was seized.
Raids were also carried out at three other locations - flat in the Oliver Bond complex, a flat in nearby Dolphin House and a property at James's Street.
Documentation and drugs paraphernalia were seized in the other properties.
Sources said the man has been "heavily involved" in moving drugs and gathering cash for the cartel in recent months.
He has been in charge of a network of street dealers who have been flooding the south-inner city with drugs, particularly heroin.
"He has worked himself up to be a key player.
"He's happy to show off that he has money and it has been noticed that his kid has been lavished with top-of-the-range gifts," a source said.
"He'll be raging that his watch has been taken from him - it's all about bling to him.
"Gardai are aware that he seems to have a lot of money for a young fella living in the flats."
Supt Paul Murray welcomed the south-inner city seizure when he spoke at a press conference at Garda HQ.
"There was another success in the south-inner city today," he told reporters.
"Some of those groups and the targets being searched, they are at the lower level and we have made arrests.
"Included in those seizures we have diversely recovered a Rolex watch, cocaine and a car, and the background work to those will be dominated by the Criminal Assets Bureau where the assets will be looked at and confiscated if possible.
"The support services such as CAB and other national units will be used.
"It's coming in at the underbelly, so we're targeting different levels and this targets what we treat as further down the chain, what we would consider second and third-degree level criminals, so we're coming in at these groups from all angles."
The arrested 23-year-old has been on the garda radar for involvement in serious crime since he was a teenager.
He has served a number of minor jail sentences and was previously involved in a savage attack on a prison officer.
A thug with multiple previous convictions, he was also involved in a violent incident in a Dublin hospital.
Sources said he has been "doing the running" for notorious Crumlin criminals such as Liam Byrne, who answer directly to cartel boss Daniel Kinahan.
"Without the likes of this individual, the cartel would cease to operate," a senior source said.
A week of garda action against the cartel began with the seizure of a sub-machine gun last Monday.
Separately, senior cartel figure Liam Roe was arrested on suspicion of money-laundering offences on Tuesday.
The 38-year-old, from Drimnagh, spent several hours being questioned at Crumlin garda station before being released and then transferred to Mountjoy Prison because of unpaid court fines.
Roe is a suspect in the massive CAB investigation that led to a large amount of jewellery, 29 cars, SUVs and six motorbikes being seized in raids in early March.
More arrests are expected in the CAB investigation in the coming weeks as well as more garda raids.