Garda headquarters are working with cops in Bangkok to block the ‘flow of money’ from online scammers targeting Ireland

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said the ‘long-term’ operation is part of an expansion of the Garda Liaison Officer (GLO) network, in which senior guards are deployed across Europe, America, the Middle East, South East Asia, Australia and Colombia, to ‘build links’ with local law enforcement to thwart Irish and foreign gangs involved in drugs, murder, deception, cryptocurrency theft, financial fraud and other crimes.

Speaking at the graduation of 54 new Gardai including from Russia, Tajikistan, Poland, Mauritius, Iraq and England, at the Garda Training College, Templemore, Co Tipperary on Friday, Commissioner Harris said Gardai must have “an international footing as we are always concerned about organized crime, and always prosecuting those who engage in it”.

The new ties with Bangkok “really respect our concerns about the flow of money through criminal assets around the world, in terms of tracking large-scale fraud, and money that has been defrauded. to individuals through various forms of deception, which then descends into the banking system,” Mr. Harris said.

“If we are in strategic places, all over the world, we can make a real difference in terms of interdicting criminal finance movements,” he added.

The Justice Minister has also approved a new GLO post in Abu Dhabi as Gardai prosecutes members of the Kinihan drug cartel, which has also been implicated in a plethora of Irish gang killings.

“The overall aim of this is to establish links with law enforcement around the world, and where we have placed the Garda liaison officers, we have always benefited and really benefited from the amount of information leading to investigations and bringing individuals to justice here in Ireland. , or even, in other jurisdictions,” Mr. Harris said.

The “main function of the GLO is to support us in terms of organized crime, terrorism; we already have a good network in Europe, and it’s well established, we moved to the United States of America, in 2020, and we moved to Bogota, last year and these are very important deployments for us .

“Bogota has been very important, and just having someone there to liaise with local law enforcement, but also with the other network of liaison officers, it’s been a big difference and that puts us on a global stage.”

Commissioner Harris also encouraged the public to continue to provide information to the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) about others showing off large amounts of wealth with no apparent income.

“People see things, notice, indeed wealth has been shown, which is difficult actually, to understand how an individual could show that wealth, even in terms of personal possessions, what he does in his house, the cars they own or drive. So please tell us, please tell CAB and we now have a very extensive network of local asset consideration and investigation,” said Mr Harris.

“We’re not just looking for the ‘Mr Bigs’, important as they are, we’re going after mid-level dealers and taking away their trappings of wealth where they’ve been, they’ve been obtained from crime.”