The cocaine seized by Gardai.

Cocaine worth €8.4 million seized

Cocaine with a street value of €8.4 million has been seized in Westmeath along with a light aircraft in a local airfield.

On Thursday (August 4), as a result of ongoing investigations targeting drug related organised crime activity under Operation Tara, personnel attached to the Garda National Drugs & Organised Crime Bureau supported by other national units, intercepted two vehicles at two locations in the Lough Owel area of Mullingar.

The operation took place shortly after 6pm yesterday. In the course of the search, 120 kilogrammes of cocaine with an estimated street value of €8.4 million was recovered along with several communications devices.

Follow up searches were conducted at residential premises in Naas, Co Kildare and Waterford City, and at a commercial airfield in Co Longford, reported in the national media as Abbeyshrule, where a light aircraft has been seized.

Two males, age 54 and 40 years, were arrested on suspicion of drug trafficking contrary to section 15 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977 and are currently detained, pursuant to the provisions of section 2 of Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act, 1996, at Ashbourne Garda Station.

Assistant Commissioner Justin Kelly, the Head of Organised and Serious Crime said: "This operation has prevented a considerable quantity of dangerous drugs from making it onto our streets and causing significant harm to our communities.

"An Garda Síochána is committed, under Operation Tara, to disrupting and dismantling the organised criminal networks who profit from drug trafficking and impact so negatively on our society”.

Investigations are ongoing.