Gardaí investigation fraud associated with the government’s Pandemic Unemployment Payment scheme have carried out searches in counties Clare and Limerick.
Since May 2020 The Department of Social Protection have engaged with An Garda Síochána investigating multiple Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) fraud offences.
The investigation has identified a suspected international organised crime group comprising of persons based in Ireland and other jurisdictions who have engaged in both identity and fraud offences to obtain PUP monies. A total of 28 individuals were identified as being active participants.
On the 2nd December 2020 a number of searches were conducted in Limerick and Clare in connection with this investigation. This is a joint operation involving Department of Social Protection Officials, Gardaí seconded to the Department of Social Protection, Customs and Excise Officials and Gardaí based in Limerick and Clare including Detectives, uniformed personnel, the Armed Support Unit and the Garda Dog Unit.
A number of items including documentation and related material have been seized and are currently being examined.
The investigation is continuing.