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Garda raid Pressure mounts on major criminal 'The Smelter' after €74k cash and €2.2m worth of catalytic converters seized

A man in his 20’s who was arrested at the scene is suspected of being one of suppliers of catalytic converters to the ‘master smelter’ whose operations have now taken a massive hit according to senior sources.

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Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

A detailed garda investigation into the arch-criminal known as ‘The Smelter’ have intensified after officers seized almost €75k in cash, 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million.

The discovery was made during a search operation in Dublin 11.

Last week we revealed that the criminal who is aged in his 50’s is suspected of being the “go-to-guy” for thugs who have been involved in a nationwide spree of stealing catalytic convertors from vehicles.

This was after an operation in the Ballymun area in which gardai said they had they “seized 300 catalytic convertors weighing a total of 1275kg with an estimated value of €150,000.”

“He operates out of at least three counties and he is the man that the CAT’S generally end up with as he has the expertise to extract the precious metals which are then often legitimately shipped out of the country,” a senior source explained.

“Apart from Dublin he has bases along the border and in the midlands – the criminals who are coming to him with the convertors are actually getting very little cash out of the enterprise than what he is,” the source added.

Gardai announced details of the massive seizure in a statement.

“At approximately 9.45am this morning, Gardaí attached to the Divisional Crime Task Force, DMR North, searched a business premises in Dublin 11 under warrant. They were assisted by personnel from Fingal County Council, a Customs and Revenue Officer and dog handler, and the National Trans Frontier Shipments Office (NTFSO),” a garda spokeswoman said.

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Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

“During the course of the search operation, Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters with an estimated value of €1.2 million.

“Gardaí also seized 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters; each drum contained approximately 300 catalytic converters in powder form. The value of the smelted catalytic converters is estimated at €1 million.

“Cash to the value of €74,240 was also seized during the course of the search. All items seized are subject to a technical examination.

“The search was conducted as part of the ongoing investigation into the theft of catalytic converters throughout the Dublin Metropolitan Region and subsequent regions,” she explained.

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The catalytic converter is a section of a vehicle’s exhaust where gases from the engine are passed over and through a metal that breaks down pollutants within.

CAT'S as they are known have become rich pickings for organised criminals worldwide because as gardai warn, the items “cannot be uniquely traced to one vehicle.”

The CAT’S contain precious metals such as platinum, palladium and rhodium which are then brought by the gangs who have been stealing them from vehicles to specialist metal refiners who can extract the precious metals inside.

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Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

Gardaí seized 2,150 catalytic converters and 14 drums of smelted catalytic converters, with a combined value of €2.2 million, during a search operation in Dublin 11 this morning.

‘The Smelter’ does not have any serious criminal convictions but has been a major target for gardai for years who have investigated him in a number of organised stolen car probes.

“He has connections to a number of organised burglary gangs and is someone who has been in the game for a long time – he is making a fortune,” the source pointed out.

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