$5 million reward offered by US authorities for information on Kinahans

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$5 Million Reward Offered By Us Authorities For Information On Kinahans $5 Million Reward Offered By Us Authorities For Information On Kinahans
US ambassador to Ireland Claire Cronin speaking at Dublin City Hall, after it was announced that the US government is offering $5m for information on the Kinahan crime gang or for the arrest and conviction of its leaders. Photo: PA
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Updated at 11:31

US authorities are offering a $5 million reward for information that leads to the arrest or conviction of three senior Kinahan members, Christy Snr, Daniel or Christopher Jnr, US ambassador to Ireland Claire Cronin told a press event in Dublin.

According to the Irish Times, Irish, American and British law enforcement have launched a major joint action against the Kinahan cartel in a bid to frustrate their criminal and financial international operations.

Speaking at a media conference in Dublin’s City Hall on Wednesday morning, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris described the joint move by the Irish, US, British and European authorities against the Kinahan cartel as a crucial day.

US ambassador to Ireland Claire Cronin said the US department of the treasury is offering a reward of $5 million (€4.6 million) for information that will lead to the “financial destruction” of the Kinahan crime gang or the arrest and conviction of its leaders.

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Commissioner Harris warned senior gang members that they can run but “can’t hide from justice forever”, adding that they will eventually run out of money.

Among those sanctioned by the US department of the treasury’s office of foreign assets control (OFAC) were its key members, including leaders Christy Kinahan Snr, Daniel Kinahan and Christy Kinahan Jnr.

They were named as being heads of the criminal network.

Garda Assistant Commissioner John O'Driscoll shows a slide relating to Garda seizures from the Kinahan organised crime group at Dublin City Hall. Photo: PA

Also named and sanctioned were their associates Sean McGovern, Ian Dixon, Bernard Clancy and John Morrissey.

A number of businesses were also identified as being associated with the crime gang.

The sanctions and the reward now offer for the conviction of the “apex of the organisation”, as well as travel restrictions being placed on them, was only “the first phase”. The authorities in Northern Ireland, Australia, the Netherlands and Spain were also working with the Irish authorities.

“The Kinahan Organized Crime Group smuggles deadly narcotics, including cocaine, to Europe, and is a threat to the entire licit economy through its role in international money laundering,” said US Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson.

“Criminal groups like the KOCG prey on the most vulnerable in society and bring drug-related crime and violence, including murder, to the countries in which they operate.

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"Treasury is proud to have coordinated so closely with our international counterparts, and the US government will continue to use every available resource to dismantle these criminal networks.”

In short, OFAC's sanctions deem the Kinahan gang a threat to US national security.

The sanctions mean that the gang and its associated businesses in the UK and the UAE mean US banks and financial institutions cannot do business with Kinahan organised crime group members and three designated businesses - Nero Drinks Company Limited, Hoopoe Sports LLC, and Ducashew General Trading LLC.

Property blocked

"As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of the designated individuals or entities that are in the United States or in the possession or control of US persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC," OFAC said it a statement.

"OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by US persons or persons within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of designated or otherwise blocked persons."

In its statement on the sanctions, OFAC describes the Kinahan Organised Crime Gang (KOCG) as having emerged in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It says the group is now the "most powerful organised crime group operating in Ireland.

It also says the group is "established" in the UK, Spain, and the UAE.

"Irish courts have concluded that the KOCG is a murderous organisation involved in the international trafficking of drugs and firearms," it said.

In its statement on the sanctions, OFAC describes the Kinahan Organised Crime Gang (KOCG) as having emerged in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It says the group is now the "most powerful organised crime group operating in Ireland.

It also says the group is "established" in the UK, Spain, and the UAE.

"Irish courts have concluded that the KOCG is a murderous organisation involved in the international trafficking of drugs and firearms," it said.

Additional reporting by PA

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