Friday, 30 September 2020

Dale Farm and the Irish traveller connections Down Under

Putting aside the rights and wrongs of the planned eviction of Irish travellers at Dale Farm, more than few individuals with addresses at the site have been part of scam operations around the world. Crews of Irish travellers sparked a nationwide alert in Australia in 2008 selling dodgy electrical generators at inflated prices. (Pictured) Trading standards officials discovered a number of the men involved, all Irish travellers, gave Crays Hill and Dale Farm as their address. One group included Danny 'Bishop'O'Brien and Michael Hegarty from Rathkeale, who have since been written to by the Australian authorities warning them not to come back. Back in 2004 James Gammel also gave the Essex site as his address when jailed for cigarette smuggling in Belgium. He was one of three Rathkealers jailed including Richard 'Kerry' O'Brien junior, recently convicted of rhino horn smuggling in the United States. His cousin, also named Richard, has emerged as the only male spokesman for the traveller sat the site, although there has been little mention of his own convictions for tobacco smuggling. Dale Farm has been described to me by Rathkeale travellers as "a come and go place" but the Basildon council have really tied themselves up in an expensive knot on this one.

Thursday, 29 September 2020

Two likeable rogues show how easy is to use someone's identity to buy expensive jewellery on credit

These cheeky chaps give an entertaining demonstration of how easy it can be for professional con-artists to steal an identity. They’ll run up debts on store-cards, credit-cards and take out bank loans in someone else’s name. There’s not a whole lot you can do to completely protect yourself, except to keep an eye on your bank and card accounts. Anyway, if you got a few minutes have a look at this on VICE

Crime DOES pay for the black-market bandits

For a small country we have a lot of difficulty keeping a lid on the the organised black-market operators. It's now suggested that illicit diesel is losing €300 million a year to the tax take. Read here. Add in the billion or so smuggled cigarettes and the €60 million plus generated by the vice trade, you can see why crime does pay for some.

Wednesday, 28 September 2020

Love hurts, but for some it must really hurt thanks to online scams

Online scammers are thought to have conned as many as 200,000 people in UK through online romance. The figures come from a study by two British universities with the Serious Organised Crime Agency in the UK. That level would suggest at least 2,000 people have been victims in Ireland. SOCA warns people that bogus suitors meet their victims through online dating sites but quickly switch to instant messaging services to stay in touch. Watch out if the new love of your life has a job in a foreign country that gives them an excuse for not being in contact, such as a soldier, aid worker or polar explorer. They tend to be suspiciously good-looking and are quick to come up with a pet name to establish intimacy. Alarms bells should definitely be ringing if they have an accident or need a lawyer in a hurry and start looking for cash. Read The Guardian's story here.

Not-so-free to air con-artists ripping off householders

It appears that cold-callers offering to install Saorview, the free digital TV service for RTE, have been ripping off householders. They have been charging people €350 to set up the system that really costs just €59. Read more here. The utility companies who send sales people around trying to drum up business are unwittingly providing cover for bogus callers.