Four men are in custody today in Westmeath following a Garda operation targeting a criminal gang involved in burglaries.
The men were arrested in Lucan, Co. Dublin, on Wednesday, having been intercepted by National and Regional Garda Units following a report of a burglary in Mullingar.
The four men, one in his 60, one in his 20s and two in their 30, all from Dublin have been taken to Mullingar Garda Station where they are detained under Section 4 of The Criminal Justice Act, 1984.
An Operational Order was issued last week to Garda Síochána personnel throughout the country notifying them of the launch of a winter phase of Operation Thor and directing a range of activity to be undertaken for the purpose of preventing a predictable upsurge in burglaries which occurs during the winter months.
Assistant Commissioner John O’Driscoll who is the officer in charge of Special Crime Operations and is assigned overall responsibility for coordinating Operation Thor activity, convened a meeting of senior officers on Thursday last.
At the meeting Assistant Commissioner O’Driscoll requested that Detective Superintendents throughout the country gather intelligence regarding organised crime gangs who are travelling around the country, committing burglaries and using the motorway network to ensure speedy escape from crime scenes. They were also asked to nominate suspects for targeting.
The Operation Thor related activity resulted last evening in an organised crime group who are suspected to have left Dublin earlier in the day in a stolen high-powered vehicle and travelled to the Midlands region and committed burglaries, being apprehended later in the Lucan area of Dublin.
The four were arrested in possession of jewellery believed to be the proceeds of burglaries, along with what are believed to be house breaking implements. They are detained on suspicion of having committed burglaries.