C LALLY Irish Times 1/11/10
GARDAÍ HAVE seized drugs and a firearm and have arrested three people in unrelated gangland incidents in Dublin at the weekend.
In one of the operations, gardaí seized cannabis and cocaine. They believe the Dublin gang behind the haul has joined forces with a Vietnamese-led crime gang involved in large scale cannabis-growing operations here.
As part of the investigation into the Dublin gang, gardaí raided a house on Glasmanna Road, Finglas, north Dublin, and found drugs with an estimated street value of about €320,000.
Among the haul was cocaine valued at €210,000, cannabis plants valued at €10,000 and cannabis pollen valued at €110,000.
Cannabis pollen is effectively dried cannabis plants crushed and compressed into slabs.
The slabs are sold in 1kg quantities, usually for about €4,000 wholesale, to Irish gangs for sale on the streets. The street value of 1kg of cannabis pollen is between €12,000 and €14,000.
A man and woman in their 20s were arrested at the house in Finglas when the cannabis and cocaine find was made at 1.15pm on Saturday. They were taken to Finglas Garda station for questioning.
Gardaí believe the cannabis plants and pollen were sourced from one of a number of mainly Vietnamese-led gangs now operating here.
These gangs have become involved in cultivating crops of cannabis in sophisticated growing operations in rented houses across the Republic over the past two years. Last Thursday, gardaí found the latest cannabis grow house in Cullenmore, Ashford, Co Wicklow, where a crop of plants valued at €500,000 was discovered in a large rented house.
The discovery was the 15th grow-house found, involving seizures of plants valued at more than €4 million, since July as part of the Garda National Drugs Unit specialist grow-house investigation, Operation Nitrogen.
In another operation at the weekend, not related to the Finglas cannabis and cocaine find, gardaí seized a gun from a 19-year- old man in East Wall in Dublin’s north inner city.
The handgun was seized at East Road at 2.30pm on Saturday during an intelligence-led operation by local detective and drug units from the Garda’s Dublin north central division.
The man arrested at the scene is from Coolock, north Dublin.
He is believed to be aligned to a drugs gang involved in localised feuding with other factions in Coolock.
He is also associated with one of two feuding gangs based around the Sheriff Street area in the north inner city, not far from where he was arrested on Saturday.
The feud between the rival Sheriff Street factions has claimed five lives since it began about eight years ago, with two of the fatal attacks having taken place this year.
The man arrested in East Wall is being held under section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act at Store Street Garda station in the north inner city. He can be detained for up to 72 hours without charge.