CAB following the paper trail

In the Irish Times, Conor Lally reports that a tax bill of €4 million has already been served on Thomas Murphy[subs req] and details the links from the Murphy family to three companies, the latest being Ace Oils Ltd.. which all registered at the same address at different times over the last 20 years with different family members as directors. The CAB investigation is reported to be calculating the revenue from all three companies before preparing a further tax assessment. A separate report in the Irish Times[subs] also notes that, despite one initial report, no application to seize the farm itself was made following the raids at the start of this monthThere’s a suggestion of a modus operandi with the companies noted in the Irish Times

The first company which operated on a formal basis from Ballybinaby was Cowan Oils Ltd. According to records at the companies office, it was registered in 1983.

The directors are listed as Rosemary Murphy, who is married to Patrick Murphy, and Judy Murphy, the wife of Frank Murphy[both brothers of Thomas Murphy].

The company is now in liquidation after tax assessments were raised on it in the mid-1980s. The assessments were never paid and the company was formally put into liquidation in the early 1990s.

When this liquidation took place, a new company called Trillfield Ltd was formed. This traded in the fuel business from the same address in Ballybinaby.

According to records at the companies office the directors of Trillfield Ltd were Thomas (“Slab”) Murphy and Ann Kirk, with an address at Drumkeith, Inniskeen, Co Monaghan. Ann Kirk is Thomas “Slab” Murphy’s only sister.

Trillfield Ltd came to the attention of the Revenue Commissioners in the early 1990s and after an investigation tax assessments were raised against it. The company was wound up a short time later. Around the same time Ace Oils Ltd was established.

It traded from the same address at Ballybinaby, Hackballscross, Co Louth, as Cowan Oils Ltd and Trillfield Ltd before it. According to accounts at the companies office, the current directors are Ann Brennan (37), Cornonagh, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh and Joseph McEntee (30), the Crescent, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh.

The Irish Times has learned that extensive inquiries on both sides of the Border have failed to identify and locate either of these people.

A third director of Ace Oils Ltd is Ronan Kirk (30), Drumkeith, Inniskeen, Co Monaghan. Ronan Kirk is a nephew of Thomas “Slab” Murphy. He is Ann Kirk’s son.

Ronan Kirk was before the courts late last year in relation to his role in smuggling fuel across the Border from the North to the South. He was convicted in December 5th last after being detected crossing the Border into Co Monaghan with an oil tanker containing laundered fuel. The vehicle was confiscated from him and he was fined €1,900.

Much of the documentation seized by gardaí, PSNI and Revenue officials from the North and South in the March 9th cross-Border operation relates to the activities of Ace Oils.

I’m not entirely convinced that the tax route will win in the high stakes game.

And as the separate report in the Irish Times notes –

While the analysis of financial records seized, both on printed paper and on laptop computers, is still at an early stage, gardaí believe the paper trail created by those running the operation strongly indicates money laundering has been taking place.

More than €1 million in cash and cheques were seized in the raids. Great efforts had been made in the firm’s financial records to hide the funds’ origins.

The Irish Times understands that this may make it more difficult for the Criminal Assets Bureau (Cab) to identify those involved in the wider smuggling network, particularly those who bought laundered fuel in commercial quantities for resale.

Garda sources said despite Thomas “Slab” Murphy having no registered interest in Ace Oils Ltd, the fact that the company’s records were found on the Murphy family farm is strongly indicative of his interest in the firm. This link will need to be firmly established by gardaí as the investigation progresses.[emphasis added]

Some of the records seized relate to a working farm in the Ballybinaby area which is believed to be owned by the Murphy family.

While the €1 million in cash and cheques seized was put under the control of a Criminal Assets Bureau receiver by the High Court last week, no application in respect of the farm has been made.

  • Simon

    And what exactly have the CAB got to do with serving tax demands??

    Isn’t there another more appropriate department for that?

    Or, is this pen-gun redux?

    One thing that’s becoming clearer and clearer is that for all the investigating that’s supposedly going on, there’s not a great deal of criminality being uncovered. Would that all of us had our private affairs so subjected to public scrutiny and so little unearthed.

    Perhaps that’s why media resort to their version of the nuclear option in exploding what always turn out to be no more than damp squibs.

    It’s coming very close to the time when those who’ve pretended to a critical faculty when dealing with such leaks from security agencies, really do need to reflect on their own capacity for truthfulness.

  • bean counter

    I don’t know whether or not you have read to-day’s Irish Times report but I’ll qoute some extracts in case you haven’t
    “Gardai believe large quantities of sterling notes seized at the Murphy farm proves that those operating the oil laundry were illegally selling laundered fuel throughout Northern Ireland” and
    “More than €1 million in cash and cheques were seized in the raids. Great efforts had been made in the firm’s financial records to hide the funds’ origins”
    I suppose there but for the grace of god go I!

  • willis

    So when is the Press Conference?

  • common sense

    What have CAB got to do with tax you say? Have a look at section 5 of the Criminal Assets Bureau Act, 1996. It states what the functions of CAB are:

    Section 5.—(1) …..the functions of the [Criminal Assets] Bureau, operating through its bureau officers, shall be the taking of all necessary actions—

    ( b ) under the Revenue Acts or any provision of any other enactment, whether passed before or after the passing of this Act, which relates to revenue, to ensure that the proceeds of criminal activity or suspected criminal activity are subjected to tax and that the Revenue Acts, where appropriate, are fully applied in relation to such proceeds or activities, as the case may be

    The CAB have hit several crims and druggies down South with substantial tax assessments since 1996, notably John Gilligan and Thomas McDonnell (Dublin pimp). What makes Murphy think he’s any different from the rest of these scumbags? These proceedings can’t be dismissed as some trumped up media fabrication. Looks like it’s going to be a bad year in the run up to the elections for the Shinners. Adams is going to find out the hard way that people down South have an enormous amount of respect for the Criminal assets Bureau, the usual cries of securocrats and political policing won’t cut any ice. CAB have been enormously successful in dismantling drug gangs and other networks of scumbags all over the 26 counties, and now Murphy’s going to go down in style. And deep down, all the Shinners who are protesting his innocence, know full well that Murphy is a fuel smuggler and a crim, and there can be no tolerance for this kind of criminality. I’d be willing to bet that this is just the start of the dismantling of Sinn Fein’s criminal network, I’d say Adams is going to have a red face at the next Ard Deis….

  • Kathy_C

    Posted by Kathy C

    Hi all,

    I find it extremely intersting how the papers have convicted the Murphy’s as guilty criminals.

    Also how so many are saying Republicans are going to be red faced because of the so called criminality of the Murphy’s.

    Let’s see….hasn’t Blair been involved with cash for Lord scandal…where is the outrage to have him thrown out of power and the Labor party distance itself from that criminal. Or what about the british intellegence officer(s) who gave the report that Sadam Husein was looking for nukes in africa… Or how about Blair using the might of the british forces to help invade and destroy Iraq all based on false intellegence. Didn’t Mandelson a former northern Ireland scretary do illigal things and had to get out of gov’t for awhile to then be let in again…. Oh, and we can’t forget the blind guy in the cabniet who broke the law for his girl friend’s nanny….Many in the blair gov’t have broken the law…aka…they are criminals…yet the Labor party is still alive and well.
    Personally, I think they are trying to build a case against the Murphy’s to use it as another excuse why Irish Catholics who want a united Ireland can’t be in gov’t in the north of Ireland. Same old …same old….blame anyone with Republican ties with criminality as a pretense to keep the assembly and executive from functioning….
    If we are to believe the reports….Mr. Murphy was very smart to have this scheme going on for decades without the gov’ts being able to link anything to him…and now….tons of cash were found hidden in a hay stack and the Murphy’s were stupid enough to hide computers in the hay stacks and not think all those agents wouldn’t be able to find them. It’s laughable at times what the british gov’t thinks it can pull over on the people and because of the protestant dislike of republicans….they buy these stories hook line and sinker.

  • common sense

    Kathy, there’s a fundamental flaw underlying your entire post… the Criminal Assets Bureau have nothing to do with Mandelson or Blair, they’re the Garda Siochana, dispensing Southern justice. Irish government…. not british Government. The fact remains that Murphy is a criminal, you would seriously have to be deluded to believe otherwise. Murphy sued the Times in the Dublin courts, and 12 jurors found that he was in fact a crim. Seriously, anyone who thinks these proceedings are just media hype is deluded, the Criminal Assets Bureau HAVE obtained an interim order freezing 1 million euro belonging to Scum Murphy, this was granted on the basis that the money represents the proceeds of crime. This has nothing to do with securocrats, or politics, or republicanism, or protestants. IT HAS TO DO WITH A SCUMBAG CRIMINAL LINING HIS POCKETS WITH THE PROCEEDS OF CRIME. Seriously, is anybody honestly claiming that Murphy is not a senior member of the IRA and is not a criminal who has been lining his pockets with hot money????

  • pakman

    Kathy C

    “Personally, I think they are trying to build a case against the Murphy’s to use it as another excuse why Irish Catholics who want a united Ireland can’t be in gov’t in the north of Ireland”


    The “they” you refer to are the Criminal Assets Bureau – an agency of the Irish state. The minister of justice in that state is an avowed republican, albeit one who despises the criminality and fascism of the provisionals. I suspect the only government he is concerned to keep Sinn Fein free is his own ie ,in your parlance, that of the “south of Ireland”

    Oh, by the way it’s “Labour” with a “u”.

  • Dave

    Kathy what does the C represent?

  • Wag

    C as in “C no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil”?


  • Yokel

    Boom Boom Wag….you could do warm up for Bernie Clfton..well someone has to…I think the Bernie Clifton ‘All Variety Cross Community Roadshow’ would be a big player in creating understanding here…Him..the Krankees, Stu Francis…watching them is enough to make you forget about hating the other focus it all on the entertainers instead…just a thought anyone with me?

    C is it for Coffey?

  • Kathy_C

    posted by Kathy C

    Hi all,

    Doesn’t Ahern do Blair’s bidding? Doesn’t Ahern let military planes fly over and land in neutral Ireland? There is much talk about blair being the poodle of bush…I think ahern is the puppet of blair…and the brits are the ones who really want to get Murphy and ahern is doing it for them.

    as for what the C stands for…my last name. There are usually a ton of Kathy’s so it is a way to let people know which one….In school for a history class I was #3 because there were so many Kathy’s in the class. I guess it’s years of conditioning that I’m not the only Kathy there is. And I start each post lately as from Kathy C because for a while….my post were being credited to other people name because of a computer glich…..

  • Mullaghbawn

    Following on from Kathy C’s comments, it’s fairly obvious that Ahern does whatever Blair wants. Coincidentally, Blair escaped the the ‘cash for Lord scandal’ by visiting Australia. A country whose leader is also a puppet of Blair – Johnny Howard!

    In regards to the ‘criminal activity’ of republicans. Define criminality. I ask myself the question – would republicans need to resort to these activities if they had more support from their fellow countrymen in the South! NO! McDowell, Ahern and Co. are in fact the criminals as they have done absolutely nothing to try and reunite Ireland. Instead Blair and Ahern meet and carry on like old school friends!

    It benefits both Ahern and Blair to try and continue the spin of ‘republican criminality’. Why not try and pin something on a man the Brits have been desperately trying to get for the last 30 old years. I don’t believe for a minute, that Slab would have a momentary lapse into stupidity and leave any incriminating evidence lying around in a shed.

    By the way, has any agency been established in the South to investigate corruption and/or misappropriation of taxpayers money by politicians? If so, they ought to show the same amount of zeal as CAB!

  • Kathy_C

    posted by Kathy C

    Mullaghbawn, Excellent post!

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