Gangs and Drugs are back, in full Flow, in Limerick? Tensions of Gangland War runs High??? Tomorrow there is an end to Minimum Unit Pricing in alcohol. The costs are to rise significantly. How will people on minimum funds respond to this? Soothing is necessary in these dreadful COVID-19 times; hope this MUP does not lead to more crime and addiction which in turn has resulted in families facing inordinate drug deaths and violence threats.

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Children at risk in crack cocaine crisis — and gardaí fear worse to come

2nd January 2022

A number of young mothers in Limerick have been caught up in an escalating crack cocaine problem in the city that has resulted in children being put into care.

Gardaí fear the release of two notorious drug-dealing brothers within weeks of each other could exacerbate tensions in the city.

Heroin dealer Kieran Collopy was released December 13, just before Christmas, a week after his brother Brian walked free.Pic: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images© Provided by Pic: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

They were leading members of a Limerick gang involved in a decade-long feud with the McCarthy-Dundon gang.

Gardaí say they will be monitoring ‘what transpires’ over the next few weeks.

A source said: ‘The dynamics have drastically changed on their turf over the last while so it will be interesting to see if there is a power play.

‘It’s the next generation coming behind them that has been pushing onto the scene since the brothers were locked up. Younger associates of the Keane/Collopys are now central to it.’Garda, Ireland, police© Provided by Garda, Ireland, police

Another source said crack cocaine has transformed the drug scene in the city.

‘The situation in Limerick is terrible with young mothers getting so caught up in it their children have gone into care,’ the source added.

In one case, Tusla were bringing a mother’s children to and from school by taxi, providing cooked meals and after-school support. But the addiction ‘absolutely consumed her’ and her children ended up in care.

Last year, Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche referred to ‘drugs supermarkets’ being run out of the St Mary’s Park area of the city.Pic: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images© Provided by Pic: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

He told a Joint Policing Committee in May that gardaí are working with the Criminal Assets Bureau and the Limerick City and County Council to prosecute ‘anybody who thinks they are going to set up drug cartels there’.

Chief Supt Roche said checkpoints have been established around St Mary’s Park to monitor people who are visiting the estate from outside with the aim of purchasing drugs.

Brian Collopy, 47, of Kilonan, Ballysimon, and Kieran Collopy, 44, of St Ita’s Street, St Mary’s Park, were each ‘caught red handed’ in 2015 bagging €37,000 of heroin.

Sentencing them to eight years in prison the judge said the pair were at ‘top end of drugs pyramid’ in the city.

Gardaí believe the brothers continued to deal drugs behind bars and are suspected of controlling the supply into Limerick prison.

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