‘Tiger’ Bank raid nets up to £40 million

Looks like the robbers of the Northern Bank in Belfast didn’t keep their record for long. Indeed, they may well have uncovered a major system weakness in the way cash is stored and shipped. In Kent yesterday one member of staff at a Securitas depot had their family kidnapped and threatened yesterday whilst a gang dressed as policemen took up to £40 million.

  • Hmmm.. except the Northern bank robbery wasn’t the first time that hostages were taken, and threatened, to ensure co-operation by bank, or, in this case, cash depot, officials..

    There’s a detailed BBC report here

    Actually, I’d say this robbery has more in common with the Midland Bank Clearing Centre raid in 1995 – mentioned here – than the Northern Bank..

  • barcas

    Nah! I recon it wus the IRA wot done it.

    Northern Bank job – clearly a practice run for the real thing.

  • Henry94

    barcas

    Did the IRA leave what was decribed atthe time of the Northern Bank as their “trademark” no evidence. That would of course be a dead giveaway.

    Add to that the fact that we were assured they were the only people capable of pulling of such an operation and they are bang to rights.

    Round up the usual suspects!

  • smcgiff

    I think Barcas was being sarcastic, Henry.

    But you do raise a good point. There’s no serious mention that the IRA carried out this raid.

    It at least gives the possibility that the IRA did not do the Northern Bank job.

  • J Kelly

    Of course it was the IRA the van was seen heading in the direction of the Falls Road, the IRA are the only people in the world capable of dressing as policemen and have the ability to take hostages. This is a job for the IMC they will tell us who donit. Sure they told us that the IRA carried out 6 unreported assaults they wouldn’t lie.

  • Henry94

    smcgiff

    It at least gives the possibility that the IRA did not do the Northern Bank job.

    Unless there is a British gang capable of organising such a robbery but incapable of organising ferry tickets.

  • Seano

    Does anyone know of any British gangs that are capable of carrying this kind of haul off?

    As Henry said, you can be certain that the “usual suspects” (IRA) will get a clean look.

    Anyway, April’s IMC report is too close to have them implicate the IRA on this one.

  • micheal

    It couldn’t have been carried out by a British gang. The police said it was carried out with ‘millitary precision’ not ‘peace-keeping precision’.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    smcgiff,
    You remarked:
    “It at least gives the possibility that the IRA did not do the Northern Bank job”.

    Is your head buried so far into the sand you actually believe that ludicrous statement? Or do you, as I suspect, believe that if you say something enough times people will begin to believe it.

    For example…

    That crow is not black, it’s white
    That crow is not black, it’s white
    That crow is not black, it’s white
    That crow is not black, it’s white
    That crow is not black, it’s white

    smcgiff,
    Do you believe me now that the black crow is indeed white?

  • smcgiff

    ‘Do you believe me now that the black crow is indeed white?’

    Do you refer specifically to the albino crow of knocknagoshel?

    CL, if my life depended on it I’d say it was members of the IRA that carried out the Northern Bank robbery.

    However, it looks less black & white now that another such heist has come to light. That’s all I’m saying.

  • Henry94

    smcgiff

    I’m sure there was a time when people would, if their lives depended on it, say the IRA ran a spy-ring at Stormont.

    Suggestions that British agents were involved would have appeared absurd. I don’t mean to crow but it’s not so black and white now is it?

  • smcgiff

    ‘I don’t mean to crow but it’s not so black and white now is it?’

    Groan 😉

  • TAFKABO

    There was a massive explosion in Iraq yesterday, does that mean we can rule the IRA out of the running for the Docklands bombing?

    That seems to be the level of argument we have here at the moment.

  • smcgiff

    ‘There was a massive explosion in Iraq yesterday, does that mean we can rule the IRA out of the running for the Docklands bombing?’

    Only if Iraq has suddenly moved to within two hundred miles of Belfast, and is now part of the UK.

  • Henry94

    barcas

    We were told the IRA were the only ones capable of such a robbery. So either they did yesterday’s job or there is another group at large with such a capacity. If so they could have done the NB too.

  • Kathy C

    Hi all,

    When I saw on the news the latest uk bank robbery…I had to laugh…..because it demo’s the mind set of the uk…..
    It happens in the north of Ireland and presto…the PIRA are accused and more pressure is put on Catholics to accept a protestant (howbeit a bit changing) policing board.
    It happens and England…and ahhh the trauma of it…the awfulness of it….but…no pressure is being put on any group…and no one is being kept out of gov’t.
    Yep…I find the entire thing funny.

  • DK

    Henry94,

    The IRA were the only ones capable of doing the robbery in NORTHERN IRELAND. In England I am sure that there are lots of other organisations capable, but none with meaningful political representation (unless you count the BNP)

  • smcgiff

    There you go, Henry, there’s at least one person that doesn’t think the latest bank robbers could be able to buy ferry tickets.

  • Conor

    Im sorry, but has there been any solid evidence produced to support the allegations that the IRA was responsible for the Northern Bank robbery? NO. lets leave the assumptions out then shall we.

  • TAFKABO

    Im sorry, but has there been any solid evidence produced to support the allegations that the IRA was responsible for the Northern Bank robbery? NO. lets leave the assumptions out then shall we.

    You can if you want to.I’m happy to accept they are guilty bases upon the totality of information available.
    And before you start, I’m not here to prove them guilty, I’m just here to state that I think they are guilty.

  • harpo

    Oh Lordy

    No one has even accused the PIRA of doing this raid and the MOPEry starts anyway. ‘Poor us – they are all going to accuse the PIRA of this too’.

  • heck

    it must have been the IRA. after all the DUP needs a new excuse not to have fenians in government.

    The last excuse “they hurt our feelings by calling us nazis” must be all used up by now.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    The flippancy with which some contributors are treating this very serious (and opportunistic) anti republican opportunity is just not cricket.

    Dr Balderdice et al should be assigned, no expense spared (again), to investigate this dastardly, clue free crime.

    If the IRA are not connected to this heist the good people of these Islands are entitled to ask, why not?

  • headmelter

    Why does it seem that people are talking to themselves?

  • missfitz

    Through the fog of waking up this morning, I heard the English police comparing the robbery to the Northern Bank heist. I think it’s too early to jump to conclusions, but boys oh dear, its an interesting twist.

  • Henry94

    Is the moral of the story that imaitation is the greatest form of flattery

    (The real)Henry94

  • elfinto

    It’s clear that this robbery was carried out by the same securocrat gang which cleaned out the Northern Bank.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Barcas5,
    The National Front in Britain, who were formerly the British National Party’s equivalent of the IRA to their Sinn Fein, and with whom they still have close ties to, do not have the manpower or the expertise to carry out such a raid.

    The BNP are the only major political group, outside of Ulster, who had (or have?) a violent, militant wing so the only other “political” possibilities are in Ulster or perhaps across the English Channel in Europe.

    If I had to hazard a guess I’d say that the heist was carried out by a team of highly skilled, experienced criminals with no political allegiance…but I still don’t have a fraction of doubt in my mind that a team of at least 20-30 IRA members carried out the Northern Bank robbery. It wasn’t one individual company, battalion or brigade of the Provos, but instead members hand-picked from brigades across the country, including the commander of the 3rd Battalion of the Belfast Brigade in Ardoyne – who I don’t need to name as everyone should know who I’m referring to – and IRA men from South Down and South Armagh.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    CL,

    Apparently the Battalion system as used by the IRA was discontinued by them in the late 1970’s as they swithched to the cell structure that carried them through to the ceasefires. Your analysis is therefore about twenty years out of date.

  • Paul

    Oh, I understand now, Henry 94, a London based criminal gang decided to try out their m.o. in Belfast first, including long time surveillance and intelligence gathering in west Belfast, then went back to London for the real thing, with a lorry full of money on the Seacat. You are either just trying to wind people up or you are suffering from some sort of delusional disorder and need help. We know now that when the Brits and the Garda said they were certain the PIRA did it, and that the political leadership of SF were aware of what was being planned ( which makes them liars, conmen, charlatans and untrustworthy) – because of highly placed informers, they were speaking the truth. Just cut the crap, you’ve lost the argument.
    Incidently, I’ve just heard John McVicar saying that the London robbers did not use white overalls or bleach to destroy DNA evidence – two hallmarks of PIRA thieving.

  • headmelter

    Paul & CL,

    You obviously know what you’re talking about. I’m surprised the PSNI haven’t contacted you for the benefit of your expertise…. or maybe they have;)

    headmelter

  • Henry94

    We know now that when the Brits and the Garda said they were certain the PIRA did it, and that the political leadership of SF were aware of what was being planned ( which makes them liars, conmen, charlatans and untrustworthy) – because of highly placed informers, they were speaking the truth.

    There is a hole in your theroy big enough to drive a white van through. Why didn’t the highly placed truth telling informers tell their masters about the plan before it happened.

    If as you claim the IRA is compromised to that extent it would have been impossible for them to carry out the robbery.

    So you have lost the argument to yourself. nice one.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Let’s face it – this looks like a copycat robbery, based on the Northern heist.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    CL: “If I had to hazard a guess I’d say that the heist was carried out by a team of highly skilled, experienced criminals with no political allegiance…but I still don’t have a fraction of doubt in my mind that a team of at least 20-30 IRA members carried out the Northern Bank robbery. It wasn’t one individual company, battalion or brigade of the Provos, but instead members hand-picked from brigades across the country, including the commander of the 3rd Battalion of the Belfast Brigade in Ardoyne – who I don’t need to name as everyone should know who I’m referring to – and IRA men from South Down and South Armagh.”

    You lacking a “fraction of a doubt” and a couple of hundred quid can go buy a playstation, CL. As noted abouve, the Battalion system has been out of use for a couple of decades now. Likewise, are you telling me that a criminal gang that can plan this sort of heist can acquire ferry tickets?

    The art of being invisible is actually pretty simple. All you have to do is fade into the background. And, frankly, its pretty easy — any number of social roles where the uniform becomes the primary identity — post man, cop, etc — folks focus so much on the uniform and the props, they don’t see the face. The white van is especially useful, since it can, with the appropriate magnetic signage, be almost any corporate van you’d want it to be. For a modest sum, a dozen or so sets of signage can be produced, thus allowing a group to be in an area on sucessive days without arousing suspicioun — repairmen one day, plumbers the next, delivery men the third, so on and so forth.

    The fact is, despite all the touts and turn-coats, there is no credible case against anyone, save perhaps the inkling on an inside job. You’d be better off with the playstation.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    The battalion system may have been consigned to the history books, but – unless the graffiti is wrong! – the IRA has ‘brigades’.

    Ironic that the cell system was devised to counteract the role of informers in the IRA…

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Come, now, Gonzo, its an old saw — three may keep a secret only if two are dead, just as if you have four Irishmen plotting revolution in a basement, you’ve got three fools and a tout. That they switched is simply a matter of having to do *something* about the informant problem… that it didn’t work is, alas and alack, par for the course.

  • DK

    Front page of one of the tabloids today – “IRA link to the £40m Heist”.

  • Paul

    Henry94, just because Denis D. and others, were not privy to the planning before the heist does not mean they heard nothing about it afterwards. I am quite sure they would have been alot of discussion about the robbery, and it’s ramifications within SF. The 100% cast iron certainty displayed by shilly-shalliers like Bertie Ahern regarding the involvement, or at least acquiesence, of SF leadership tells it own story.Also, if you can seriously suggest that “securocrats” committed the robbery to bring down the Executive (getting into little green men territory now)then surely you could accept that these “securocrats” were aware of the plans, but let it go ahead knowing what the outcome would be, then supplied the Govts with the intelligence? The PIRA committed the robbery, and others before that. The SF leadership allowed it to go ahead, these criminals now want to be in government.

  • Barcas (the original and only)

    Henry94.2

    Which front page of which tabloid?

    But remember, you read it here first. Slugger leads the newshawks by the nose.

  • Henry94

    Paul

    Also, if you can seriously suggest that “securocrats” committed the robbery to bring down the Executive (getting into little green men territory now)

    That would be far fetched because the executive was already down thanks to the securocrat raid on Stormont. Bigger than Watergate we were told at the time. Yet those of us who were sceptical about the official verion were proved right. The main suspect turned out to be a British agent!

    Let’s be led by the evidence. Not by claims or even claims of evidence. I have an open mind on the two bank robberies. It’s possible the IRA did them both and it’s possible they did neither.

    But just because the politicans the media and the police have an agreed and self-serving line on it does not convince me of anything. We’ve been there before.

  • abucs

    “Let’s be led by the evidence. Not by claims or even claims of evidence. I have an open mind on the two bank robberies. It’s possible the IRA did them both and it’s possible they did neither”.

    Yeah, we just don’t know. Why is it so hard to state the obvious ?

  • abucs

    oops, while i was agreeing with Henry i didn’t mean to pinch his identity. Sorry.

    Abucs.

  • J Kelly

    Paul whats more unbelievable securocrats robbing a bank or killing the highest profile human rights solicitor in Ireland or orchestrating the murder of dozens of people in Dublin and Monaghan. Remember the Brits robbed a bank in Dublin in 1972 to provoke the Irish government into cracking down on the IRA. So thinking about little green men murdering or robbing banks in hot that absurd. The reason the brits got away with so much is that people always thought “they wouldn’t would they”. They did and they are still at it.

    When will their war be over.

  • J Kelly

    I do not know what happening but i would never impersonate anyone unless there was a vote to be had.

    J Kelly not Henry948

  • barcas (the original and one and only)

    Barcas (or should that be barcai?) with numbers ain’t me. I can not be duplicated or cloned.

    I responded to Henry94.2 (above) but was signed off as Henry944. Not guilty.

    Mick, what is happenning? Has Martin Ingram turned into a virus and infected the works?

    barcas (the original and one and only)

  • barcas

    I see I have now been translated into “elfinto0”.

    I also see that the Independent is running a story that the brains behind the heist honed their skills in Belfast on the Northern Bank practice run.

    Predictable I guess – well, why shouldn’t I guess, everyone else seems to get away with it.

    I wonder who will heist my name this time.

    barcas (the first)

  • Northern Sole

    Apparently Maidstone United are currently in talks with Barcelona with a view to signing Ronaldinho…for a figure somewhere in the region of £40 million…

  • Paul

    Henry94, there was a Provo spyring at Stormont, one of the people involved also turned out to be a Special Branch informer and the case was not prosecuted to protect the identity of another informer. I doubt if DD was the sole perpetrator, even if he was or he instigated the whole thing at his handlers’ request(which nobody claims), it doesn’t change the fact that the SF leadership gave the OK for sensitive information to be collected and removed from Stormont, I believe this is called “targetting”. If they hadn’t been aware of it DD would have been expelled from SF when the stuff was found in his house, he wasn’t – SF just hoped to lie, bluster and brazen their way out as usual.

  • Paul

    There is something wrong with the “posted by” procedure, I posted the 11.14 one, not “elfinto”.
    Incidently, Henry94, the Littlejohns, a pair of smalltime crooks claimed they robbed a couple of banks in Dublin at MI5’s request, I’m not sure their story it was ever confirmed. Also, how come the weight of evidence you demand re. PIRA criminal activities obviously does not apply to “securocrat” activity where every harebrained conspiracy theory or bit of gossip is treated as proven fact.

  • And I posted the 11.04 one, not elfinto2.

  • piebald

    “Remember the Brits robbed a bank in Dublin in 1972 to provoke the Irish government into cracking down on the IRA.”

    Also don’t forget the bombings in Dublin on Friday 1 December 1972 when 2 people were killed.

    Initially blamed on the IRA they were clearly the work of Loyalists/Brits.

    Coincidentally a vote was taking place in the Dáil the following day to introduce severe anti-Republican laws.

    Shurely some mistake

    http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/events/dublin/chron.htm

  • marty

    I rather enjoyed this quote in The Times today – “Police are in contact with their colleagues in Northern Ireland for advice on how they handled the raid on Northern Bank’s Belfast headquarters”.

    Presumably they’ll be wanting to find out how not to conduct an inquiry.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,174-2056274_2,00.html

  • Paul

    Marty, it’s hard to conduct an enquiry when faced with a sophisticated criminal organisation with branches in politics, banking, law and the media, ruled with a military style discipline. I think the cops in the UK will find it a bit easier.

  • marty

    Paul,
    I think you’re overestimating the Provos influence.

    Anyway, my comment was supposed to be more generic i.e. the PSNI aren’t great at solving crime. Lisa Dorrian being a good example. But then I suppose that loyalist paramilitaries are a sophistacted criminal organisation etc.

  • elfinto

    elfinto here.

    I haven’t posted on this thread today until now. I would like to confess that I am a FRU agent and that I committed the Northern Bank heist and the job in England yesterday. Now I’m sailing around the coast of Italy with Scap and Denis Donaldson in a yacht I bought off Roman Abramovich. He he he.

  • Seano

    Elfinito

    “I would like to confess that I am a FRU agent and that I committed the Northern Bank heist and the job in England yesterday. Now I’m sailing around the coast of Italy with Scap and Denis Donaldson in a yacht I bought off Roman Abramovich. He he he.”

    And from his lack of recent postings, we’ll assume Martin Ingram is along for the ride. Yes?
    You brought him along to serve up tropical drinks. Yes?

  • smcgiff

    SMALL POTATOES?

    http://www.rte.ie/news/2006/0224/bank.html

    Up to £200,000 has been taken during a raid at a Belfast bank today.

    It is understood a family member of an employee at the Ulster Bank was held hostage during the raid at a branch at Carlisle Circus.

    Police were alerted to the robbery at around 10am and an investigation has been launched.

  • Paul

    My daughter tells me this M.O. came from a film, “The BMX Bandits.” Hollywood is to blame.

  • topdeckomnibus

    It was commented on page two that the BNP are the only violent group in England.

    mmmmm

    In the early 1980s the BNP expelled member(s) in the Deal area of Kent for allegedly carrying out paramilitary training in Kent woodland with a group the BNP disapproved of.

    I suspect that this alleged group may have been the Ramsgate/Canterbury based allegedly IRA supportive League of Saint George.

    It is then a matter of conjecture about a founder of the League of St George who gave it the IRA supportive position who also was an original member of the British Army Association founded by George Maison in 1989 at Ramsgate Royal British Legion.

    Maison was amongst the 21 arrested Territorial Army paramilitaries of 1987 (see Who Pays the Ferryman by Pat Monteath synopsis on web)

    And Maison’s fellow Kent Adventure Training Corps cadet leader (pseudo military cadet group) Lloyd Barton was a civilian security guard at Deal Royal Marines barracks 1989 (the explosion year)

    It seems reasonable that Kent Police might have investigated alleged links with Belgian VMO. And whether the BNP had got miffed because some of its wayward membership went out playing soldiers with guns obtained via BNP ?

    Kent Police were in a position and under duty to look at this

    (1) Their Police Authority asked them to
    (2) They were deployed on to the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry in which the father of one of the wrongly accused was allaged, by press, to be the BNP gun runner.

    Gen De Chasterlain checked his terms of reference to see whether he could investigate the TA paramilitaries and their Kent Police issued firearms certificates. But felt blocked because he was precluded from investigating security forces.

    http://www.preventableterror.co.uk

    I know nothing about the cash raid but the idea there are no groups of armed nutters in Kent ….

    Uzis at the 6th Thanet gun range

    nutters in the Kent police armed support group

    an interesting firer at kent police range I am told … all pally with kent police … was kenny noye.

    If kent police fail to recover all the money then I might hazard a guess at how it was laundered if the laundering was local. But that would only be a guess and in high unemployment Kent (not basking in subvention like Ulster) such money laundering investment would be most welcome.

    After all it is only money and theft is only about who is proprietor thereof. The money can still circulate and may be circulated more prudently.

    For example if I could gain sufficient proprietorship of money then I would at least halve the pay of Kent Police because they are a waste of money and space.

    But their press conferences are a laugh.

    WE take bets on how many times “Clearly” and “Professional” will occur.