NewsCrime Desk

Professional shoplifters being flown into Ireland for crime sprees

Highly organised criminal gangs are targeting Ireland
Highly organised criminal gangs are targeting Ireland

PROFESSIONAL shoplifters are being flown into Ireland for crime sprees and they then skip bail before they can be prosecuted.

The highly organised criminal gangs are targeting Ireland’s lax bail laws, which allow them to operate without fear.

Enforcement officer of Retail Excellence Michael Neary said that the scale of theft has “never been as bad”.

The organisation recently went to the Oireachtas, where they put forward their case to politicians.

The prime targets for the thieves are expensive bottles of spirits from supermarkets and off-licences all over the country.

The thieves know they have at least nine months before any charges reach the District Court.

“They come and do nine months in the country, it takes that time for the judicial system to catch up with them,” Neary told the Sunday World.

It believed the gangs operate the same way in other European countries before moving on to another jurisdiction. 

Retailers feel their hands are tied by a legal system which is “not fit for purpose”, according to Neary.