Supporting Local News

Galway Gardaí targeting five organised crime gangs


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Galway Gardaí targeting five organised crime gangs Galway Gardaí targeting five organised crime gangs

Five organised criminal gangs operating in the city are being targeted by the Garda serious crime team, a meeting of the City Joint Policing Committee (JPC) has heard.

Detective Superintendent Shane Cummins told the meeting in City Hall that the five gangs were involved in various forms of criminality including the sale and supply of illegal drugs as well as burglaries.

“Our operations against the people involved in the sale and supply of illegal drugs across the city and county have been very successful over the past two years.

“Sometimes there can seem to be a lull in terms of seizures, but that’s often because we may be focusing on a particular gang, which can take up a lot of time and resources,” said Det Supt Cummins.

Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche told the meeting that in the past year, there had been 300 detections across the city and county of people involved in the sale and supply of drugs.

He said on a global level, Europe was now regarded as a more lucrative outlet for illegal drugs than North America, with South American cartels also viewing Ireland as ‘a routeway’ to get drugs into this market.

Chief Supt Roche said the recent seizure of the synthetic drug, crystal meth (€32m on February 16 in Cork Port) showed the scale of the problem. According to Garda sources, these drugs were destined for the Australian market.

Cllr Alan Cheevers said that the Gardaí were to be commended – both locally and nationally – on the scale of the seizures over the past year or so.

“The real problem is that cocaine has now become a lifestyle choice for many people – that’s what’s really worrying about the drugs issue,” he said.

Garda Chief Data Analyst Olivia Maher made a presentation to the JPC in which she outlined that the total value of illegal drugs seized by Gardaí across the city and county in 2023 was ‘just shy of €2 million’.

The city accounted for just over €583,000 of that haul with cocaine ‘topping the table’ in terms of the substances seized by Gardaí, followed by cannabis and ecstasy – a small amount of heroin was also found.

Ms Maher also outlined a significant increase in the number of detections by Gardaí for ‘drugs driving’ in the city – up from 23 in 2022 to 52 in 2023. A further 112 drink drivers were also over the legal alcohol limit last year across the city.

In reply to a query from Mayor Eddie Hoare (FG) on the growing abuse of laughing gas (nitrous oxide) by younger teenagers, Chief Supt Roche said that Gardaí had made seizures of this substance, adding that it was a way of getting younger people into different types of drugs.

Cllr Terry O’Flaherty (Ind) said a parent who had been in contact with her was shocked to hear that six laughing gas cannisters had been found at a playground in the city.

More like this:

Sign Up To get Weekly Sports UPDATES

Go Up