second wave  | 

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris says more Kinahan associates could face sanctions

The US government offered rewards of up to $5 million for information leading to the arrests of three senior Kinahan family members

Garda Commissioner, Drew Harris pictured this morning at the official opening of the new Dublin Airport Garda Station. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

Conor Feehan

A ‘second wave’ of sanctions on other members of the Kinahan crime gang is being considered by international law enforcement agencies, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris has said.

The international aspect of the investigation into members of the Kinahan crime group also means they could face prosecution not only in Ireland, but in Europe or the US too," he added.

The news comes following last month’s announcement of US and UAE sanctions against some members of the Kinahan family and their associates.

The US government also offered rewards of up to $5 million for information leading to the arrests of three senior Kinahan family members or the financial disruption of the gang.

Minister for Justice, Helen McEntee cuts the ribbon with Garda Commissioner, Drew Harris and Superintendent Darren McCarthy this morning at the official opening of the new Dublin Airport Garda Station. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

These are Daniel Kinahan, who has been named in the High Court as the controller and manager of the Kinahan gang, his father Christopher Snr, a convicted drug trafficker, and brother Christopher Jnr, who was caught travelling on a false identity document in Germany.

They are among seven members of the Kinahan gang, as well as three associated businesses, targeted by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Mr Harris said the announcement of the international aspect of the quest to crush the Kinahan crime gang was just the first stage of the overall operation.

The new Dublin Airport Garda Station. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

“The object is to bring those gang members and the leaders of those gangs to justice. Whether we do that here in Ireland, or another jurisdiction brings them to justice and before the courts, we have to see. But why we've engaged with so many international partners is to give us every chance to bring a prosecution either here in Ireland, or in Europe or indeed in the US,” he said.

"The focus is in gathering the evidence to make sure that we've got the best chance in respect of where the prosecution could be successfully mounted. We're working very closely with US law enforcement in respect of that. That's an ongoing, and in fact daily, engagement with both US law enforcement, federal law enforcement, and also Europol.

“A huge amount of work has been done. A lot of intelligence and information has been gleaned. And now we're using that to build the case. But that’s not to say that we will be reporting this the DPP. It may be that some other jurisdiction will be taking a prosecution and we'll be seeking to support that,” he added.

He said that while the lack of an extradition treaty with the UAE, where senior Kinahan members have exiled themselves, is a difficulty for Ireland it is not the same for other nations in terms of their processes on how they might wish to bring people before the courts.

“Evidence is evidence, and we are involved in effect in a multinational operation against this organised crime group. Ultimately, this is to bring people to justice for the crimes that are alleged against them, and that's our focus. We've had a good start in terms of the sanctions, and also the reward, but the second part in this is the criminal justice outcome of bringing people before the courts,” he added.

Commissioner Harris said the appeals for information made at the time the sanctions and rewards were announced has led to further information being gleaned which will be acted upon in terms of furthering the investigation.

“There's also ongoing consideration in respect of what may be termed as a ‘second wave’ (of sanctions) so we are engaged in respect of that. But already we have seen the impact of the sanctions. We will look carefully at what we need to do in the second stage, so all avenues remain open in relation to other individuals or entities,” he said.

Commissioner Harris was speaking at the opening of the new garda station at Dublin Airport which was officially opened by Justice Minister Helen McEntee today.

The first Garda Station in Dublin Airport opened in 1987, as a single room in Terminal 1, staffed by four Gardaí.

In 1998, the Garda Station transferred to the old North Terminal building and the strength increased to one Sergeant, ten Gardaí and two Detective Gardaí.

The new station provides a modern Garda Station for Dublin Airport, with associated Garda custody facilities and includes accommodation for Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) personnel who work at Dublin Airport.

Dublin Airport Garda Station is operational 24 hours and is now staffed by one Inspector, four Sergeants, 34 Gardaí and a Detective Unit of one Detective Sergeant and eight Detective Gardaí.

Three serving members of the gardai who have died in the last week were also remembered at the ceremony.

They were Adrian Kelly who served in Borris in Ossory, Co Laois; Frank Glynn who served in Trim Co Meath; and Donal Gleeson who served in the Special Detective Unit.

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