The number of Gardai in the Mayo Division has increased by 35 in the past five years, and as a result of this increase in personnel, a new divisional drugs unit was launched just before Christmas which will be based in Castlebar, but will tackle drug-related crime across the whole Garda division.
The Mayo Divisional Drugs Unit will target the illegal sale and supply of drugs, as well as the cultivation of illegal drugs.
The new unit is under the control of Detective Superintendent Joe McKenna, and was launched last week, and has already made three detections for sale and supply of drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act, while quantities of cash and drugs have been seized in connection with these offences.
Last Monday, members of the new unit along with Gardai, the armed support units and roads policing unit conducted a checkpoint along the N5 at Clogher, Castlebar.
Chief Superintendent Tony Healy says great work has already been done since the new unit was established.
He has also set up an administrative support structure to ensure Gardai attached to the drugs unit can maximise the time they spend in the community dealing with offences rather than dealing with paperwork.
To make this strategy a success, Chief Supt Healy is asking for the support of the community, and to report any drugs activity in their area to their local Garda station or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 - 666 - 111.