Operation Storm in Thomastown
Sixty people were arrested during Operation Storm, a high visibility garda operation which took place in South Kilkenny in recent days.
The main day of action took place on Wednesday (March 14) between the hours of 8am and 5pm covering Thomastown District within the Kilkenny/ Carlow Division. A number of planned searches were undertaken by search teams deployed in South Kilkenny. In total 12 properties were searched, seven of which were positive for controlled drugs including cannabis and cocaine.
36 people were arrested in relation to crime investigation, with 31 of these being detained under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984, at Kilkenny and Thomastown Garda Stations. The offences for which persons have been arrested include thefts, assaults, fraud, burglary and breaches of section 15 Misuse Drugs Act 1977/84. 21 of these have been charged and will appear at local sittings of Kilkenny District Court in the coming weeks. The arrests were made in counties Kilkenny, Monaghan, Carlow and Dublin.
24 persons were arrested on foot of existing warrants, with a total of 28 warrants executed.
Gardaí monitored Operation Thor targets and the activities of local criminals by means of checkpoints. Crime Prevention leaflets were handed out to members of the public to increase the awareness of protection of personal property and possessions.
Automatic number-plate recognition vehicles were deployed on the off ramps of the motorway which runs through the District with the aim of identifying criminals entering the district.
Chief Superintendent Dominic Hayes and local garda management met the local business community in Kilkenny and there were number of community engagement activities conducted, including visits to local national schools at St Patricks De La Salle and St John of Gods with Community Engagement teams and Garda Mounted Unit.
Superintendent Derek Hughes, District Officer, Kilkenny liaised with local media. Members were also deployed on beat duty and a number of visits were conducted to more vulnerable older persons and nursing homes in conjunction with the Divisional Age Action Strategy.
A total of 25 trainee gardai from the Garda College Templemore assisted with the operation. While providing an extra visible presence they gain valuable learning experience regarding the running of a major policing operation. They observed the execution of warrants, arrests of suspects, prisoner management, conducting of checkpoints, court procedure and community engagement.