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NI lorry driver held after £5.5m drugs bust at Dublin Port

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The driver was detained at Store Street Garda Station, with officers attempting to carry out 'full background searches on the suspect to determine who he was working for'

The driver was detained at Store Street Garda Station, with officers attempting to carry out 'full background searches on the suspect to determine who he was working for'

PA Archive/PA Images

The driver was detained at Store Street Garda Station, with officers attempting to carry out 'full background searches on the suspect to determine who he was working for'

A haulier from Northern Ireland has been arrested after €6.2million (£5.5million) of drugs were seized at Dublin Port.

One line in the investigation is that the haul of cocaine and cannabis - one of the biggest busts of the year - may have been sent to the Republic for distribution by the Kinahan crime gang.

However, this had not been confirmed last night.

"There are not too many gangs operating that would be able to organise such a huge shipment, but the Kinahan cartel is certainly one organisation that could have," a source said.

"These drugs originated in Holland. What has been seen in recent times is that gangs in Ireland are clubbing together when purchasing drugs on this scale."

The Irish Revenue announced details of yesterday morning's massive bust.

"As a result of routine profiling, Revenue officers seized 93 kilos of herbal cannabis with an estimated value of €1.9million and 62 kilos of cocaine with an estimated value of €4.3million," a spokeswoman said.

"The drugs were discovered following the search of a trailer which had arrived into Dublin Port from Rotterdam.

"The search, with the assistance of the Revenue's mobile X-ray scanner and detector dog Robbie, led to the discovery of drugs concealed within a number of hot water cylinders.

"A Northern Ireland-based haulier was arrested at Dublin Port by the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau (DOCB).

"A UK-registered truck and trailer were also seized by Revenue officers."

The driver was detained at Store Street Garda Station, with officers attempting to carry out "full background searches on the suspect to determine who he was working for".

This year the DOCB has carried out a number of investigations into Northern Irish gangs that have been working with drug trafficking crews from the Republic.

The seizure is one of the biggest of the year and gardai believe it may have a "significant temporary impact" on the cocaine market.

It has been a major week for Revenue seizures at Dublin Port. Officers found 3.5 million cigarettes and 3.9 tonnes of tobacco there on Tuesday, also as part of "routine profiling".

"Both shipments originated in Germany and have a combined retail value of €3.8 million, representing a loss to the Exchequer of €3.25m," a Revenue spokesman said.

Belfast Telegraph