Key "Kinahan Cartel members" Liam Byrne & Thomas Kavanagh's son arrested in Spain in EncroChat probe
TWO Dubai-based suspected key members of the Kinahan organised crime cartel who are wanted by the National Crime Agency's EncroChat investigation on suspicion of firearms offences have been arrested in Spain.
Liam Byrne, 42, (below) from Dublin, who is thought to be one of the most trusted members of the Kinahan organised crime group, was arrested (top and below) on Sunday evening in the Alcudia area of Mallorca while eating in a restaurant with family members.
He had flown into Palma Airport from Dubai, UAE, on May 26.
Thomas "Bomber" Kavanagh's son, Jack Kavanagh, 22, from Tamworth, Staffordshire, another suspected member of the crime group, was arrested by officers from the Spanish National Police last Tuesday (May 30) at Malaga Airport while transiting from Dubai to Turkey.
The arrests follow a National Crime Agency (NCA) intelligence-led investigation, supported by the Spanish National Police and officers from An Garda Siochana in Ireland.
The NCA obtained Trade and Co-operation Agreement (TACA) warrants after EncroChat messages showed they were believed to be involved in the supply and acquisition of firearms.
They are currently in custody while extradition proceedings continue.
Kay Mellor, Regional Head of Investigations at the National Crime Agency said: “This investigation is part of the NCA’s ongoing work targeting the Kinahan crime group. Liam Byrne and Jack Kavanagh have been evading justice for a number of years, but have now been arrested in relation to serious firearms offences.
“We have an excellent relationship with the Spanish National Police and will continue to work closely with our international partners to ensure those who think they can stay under the radar have no place to hide.”
The Kinahan Cartel was established in Ireland and operates in the UK, Spain, and Dubai, where many of the remaining members are largely based.