Thursday, 29 January 2004

Questions (48)

Trevor Sargent

Question:

39 Mr. Sargent asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform if his attention has been drawn to the fact that vehicles are being stolen in the State and exported; and the steps he intends to take at ferry ports to ensure that such vehicles are detected at the port from which they are exported. [2524/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform)

The Garda authorities have informed me that the stolen motor vehicle investigation unit, SMVIU, which is attached to the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation Unit is responsible for the investigation of organised theft and illegal trafficking in stolen vehicles from this jurisdiction to other EU states.

Liaison between SMVIU and gardaí stationed at all ferry ports in the State takes place on a regular basis. There is also continuous communication with the police at Holyhead, Pembroke and Fishguard ports in the UK and other relevant ports in continental Europe.

The Garda Síochána also participate in a number of Interpol and Europol sponsored initiatives aimed at combating the organised theft of motor vehicles. A number of successful operations have taken place in this jurisdiction which have resulted in stolen motor vehicles being recovered before being removed from the jurisdiction. A number of arrests have resulted from these operations.