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Two men to be charged after drugs worth €7 million seized in an international operation in Meath

A significant amount of cocaine and cannabis was found during two raids in Ashbourne.

1 Facebook / An Garda Síochána Facebook / An Garda Síochána / An Garda Síochána

Updated 10.10pm

GARDAÍ RAIDED TWO premises in Ashbourne yesterday afternoon, arresting two men and seizing cannabis herb and cocaine worth an estimated €7 million.

The Co Meath raids were orchestrated by gardaí from the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau and the Special Crime Task Force as part of an international operation.

The two men are set to be charged at 9am tomorrow morning at Trim District Court in connection with the seizure.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland this morning, Assistant Commissioner John O’Driscoll said that gardaí hope the seizure will be a “more significant disruption” than a normal raid due to the gardaí sharing information with other countries’ police agencies.

When asked whether gardaí are winning the war against drug crime gangs, O’Driscoll says “we will get on top of it if we continue in this unrelenting manner”, saying that they shouldn’t “sit back when we thought we may have dealt a major blow”.

O’Driscoll said Gardaí wouldn’t be identifying “any particular crime gang” involved in this raid, adding that “it may be a conglomerate of crime gangs” working together.

The two men who were arrested at the scene are  both aged in their 30s and are being detained under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act, 1996 at Ashbourne Garda Station.

3 Facebook / An Garda Síochána Facebook / An Garda Síochána / An Garda Síochána

2 Facebook / An Garda Síochána Facebook / An Garda Síochána / An Garda Síochána

The operation is ongoing and searches were stopped for the night.

O’Driscoll, who is currently at Europol’s headquarters in The Hague, said that Gardaí are continuing “to target a range of criminality associated with organised crime”.

O’Driscoll, who has charge of Special Crime Operations said that there was a particular emphasis ”on protecting life and tackling threat to life incidents, but also, on targeting the sale of drugs and other illicit products and, importantly, targeting the financial gain and money laundering involved”.

“As can clearly be seen, An Garda Síochána, through Serious Crime Operations, is engaged in activity on all three fronts in recent days.

Drugs Facebook / An Garda Síochána Facebook / An Garda Síochána / An Garda Síochána

“In particular, today the Garda National Drugs & Organised Crime Bureau has brought to fruition an operation targeting drug trafficking, which has an international dimension.

“This has resulted in a significant seizure of cannabis herb and cocaine and the arrest of a number of suspects. Action in this jurisdiction has been coordinated with action being undertaken by international law enforcement authorities”.

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan said that the seizure was the result of “a great deal of painstaking work” and congratulated all those involved in the operation.

The illicit drugs trade is a highly destructive international business and I am pleased to see An Garda Síochána continuing to partner effectively with law enforcement in other jurisdictions.

“The effective policing operation will prevent these drugs from reaching the streets and harming individuals, families and communities.”

With reporting from Sean Murray.

First published 8am

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Read: Gardaí discover ‘elaborate’ cannabis growhouse at the house where man died in explosion

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