Sunday, October 17, 2010

Gardai warn of upsurge in gang extortion crime

Gardai have received reports that eight extortion attempts were made on Dublin businesses in the past three months by splinter republican groups. Those targeted included car dealers and publicans, as well as dubious businesses suspected of laundering money for criminals. Garda sources say the figures represent the tip of the iceberg in a recent "upsurge" in criminal racketeering by dissident republican groups, the Real IRA and the INLA. "There has been an upsurge in complaints in the last two to three months," said a senior garda source. "These groups are 'taxing' crime and legitimate businesses."

Four businesses in the south Dublin suburbs of Tallaght and Crumlin were approached for money by dissident republicans in the past three months. The other four extortion attempts occurred in the north and south inner city. In one case, a businessman reported that his children were being watched at school after he refused to pay a cut of his profits to two men claiming to represent the Real IRA. The modus operandi is similar in most cases. In the south Dublin cases, the businesspeople involved were approached directly at their business premises by two brothers, who claimed to represent the Real IRA. They were accompanied by two or three burly minders, but of the reports made to detectives so far, the threats were not explicit. In one case, the dissident republicans asked for 25 per cent of the profits of a business in return for protection.



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I am a law enforcement professional with over 35 years experience in both sworn and civilian positions. I have service in 3 different countries in both the northern and southern hemispheres.

My principal areas of expertise are: (1) Intelligence, (2) Training and Development, (3) Knowledge Management, and (4) Administration/Supervision.

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