Gardaí recover €3.3m in stolen cars since 2015

A Garda operation targeting stolen cars has recovered more than €1 million worth of vehicles since the start of this year.

Operation Waste was set up in 2015, and has recovered €3.3 million worth of stolen cars.

In total gardaí have confiscated 275 vehicles which were stolen, in many cases from home burglaries. In some cases keys left near a homeowner’s front door have been fished out through letterboxes by criminals using poles.

As part of the ongoing operation a stolen grey BMW was recovered this week.

Other stolen cars commonly seized include Audis, Mercedes, Range Rovers, and family cars.

The operation was originally set up to tackle a criminal gang who were attempting to export stolen cars to west Africa and eastern Europe in shipping containers through Dublin ports.

The Garda unit responsible for Operation Waste works closely with Revenue officials, and uses X-ray scanners at Irish ports to find cars that criminals attempt to move out of the country.

The unit also uses registration plate identification technology to track stolen cars and vehicles using cloned or false registration plates on Irish roads.

Criminal gangs in many cases have sold the stolen cars to buyers abroad, while trying to move them out of the country at Irish ports.

The operation works out of Dublin Castle, and is assisted by the Garda stolen vehicle investigation unit.

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