Brazen burglars  | 

Images show prolific burglary gang stealing safe from south Dublin home in broad daylight

"This crew have been very active across Dublin in the past week and appear to be targeting mainly upmarket estates on the southside."

Image obtained of safe being lifted into car

Robin Schiller and Ken Foy

A prolific burglary gang who target luxury homes in south Dublin have struck again after stealing a safe during a brazen daylight raid.

Detectives are on the hunt for the organised crime group who are suspected of involvement in a spate of break-ins in the capital in the past week.

The gang have been using a high-powered Mercedes AMG estate car which was stolen from the Donnybrook area last week.

The vehicle is understood to have a 6-litre engine and can reach 100 kmph in under five seconds, while sources have said it is capable of outrunning the Garda helicopter if being pursued.

One source said: "This crew have been very active across Dublin in the past week and appear to be targeting mainly upmarket estates on the southside.

"They have been carrying out detailed surveillance on properties before striking. The car used is also a high-performance vehicle and the Garda helicopter wouldn't keep up with it if it gets onto an open road or motorway."

The gang are suspected of striking again earlier today after a safe was stolen from the same area where the Mercedes getaway car was taken last week.

The latest incident happened shortly after midday today in Dublin 4.

The targeted gang are the same crew who are suspected of using a stolen Mercedes to target luxury homes in south Dublin in recent weeks.

A garda spokesman confirmed that they are investigating a burglary that occurred at a residential property on Nutley Road, Donnybrook, at approximately 12.45pm.

"No arrests have yet been made and investigations are ongoing," the spokesman added.

Bystander footage obtained by Sundayworld captured two men, one of whom was wearing a hood but did not disguise his face, lifting a safe into their Mercedes before fleeing the scene.

There have also been reports of the car being spotted in other parts of south Dublin today.

Gardaí believe they have identified those involved and suspect they are members of a burglary gang from the Tallaght area.

The suspects also have links to slain crime lord 'Fat' Andy Connors who ran an organised crime empire specialising in burglaries across the east of the country before being shot dead in 2014.

No arrests have yet been made as part of the investigation but inquiries into the gang and the high-powered car used are ongoing.

The gang are suspected of having close links to dozens of other criminals who specialise in burglaries across Dublin and Kildare.

They normally operate in groups of four or five, scouting a particular location before blitzing the area and fleeing in a stolen high-powered vehicle.

It can also be revealed that gardai are tracking a high-powered black coloured VW Golf car that is suspected to be linked to associates of the gang using the stolen Mercedes.

Over the past fortnight, an organised burglary gang are suspected of using this vehicle to travel the motorway system to carry out a spate of rural crimes.

On the evening of Saturday, May 1 last, the gang are suspected of carrying out up to seven residential burglaries in counties Carlow and Wicklow where unoccupied homes were targeted by the organised crime gang.

“In each case a window was smashed in and the home broken into and was pillaged for cash and jewellery,” a senior source said.

A garda alert was put in place after the burglaries in the Ballon and Tullow areas of Co Carlow as well as the Tinahely area of Co Wicklow that evening and there has been more burglaries linked to the high powered car in Leinster over the past week.

The two burglary teams are now a prime target of both Dublin gardaí, regional units, and anti-burglary detectives attached to national units under Operation Thor.

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