File being prepared for DPP following theft of paintings

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Garda
A FILE is to be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to the theft of valuable paintings and artefacts from a storage facility in Limerick.

A FILE is to be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to the theft of valuable paintings and artefacts from a storage facility in Limerick.

The property, which belongs to the Department of Arts, Heritage was stolen sometime last year from a privately-operated premises at the Docklands Business Park on the Dock Road.

According to garda sources, the theft was only discovered after a number of the stolen items were put up for auction in Dublin and London.

It is thought that the combined value of the property stolen could be in excess of €1 million.

Details of the theft only emerged after a man was arrested and questioned by investigating gardai last week.

Gardai from Shannon assisted by members of the national bureau of criminal investigation arrested the man who is aged in his 40’s.

The suspect lives in the Shannon area and is understood to have previously worked in Limerick.

He was questioned at Shannon garda station under section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act before being released without charge.

According to the Garda Press Office, gardai from Naas were also involved in last week’s operation.

A number of searches were carried out in the Limerick area following the man’s arrest.

Following last year’s theft, Minister Jimmy Deenihan instructed his department to undertake an in-depth investigation and report including a review of procedures and protocols in place for the storage of artefacts.

All other items belonging to the department, which were being stored at the Limerick facility have since been removed and transferred to an alternative site.

It is not known if all of the stolen property has been recovered by the authorities.