The Criminal Assets Bureau was established in the Republic of Ireland in 1996. It investigates persons who are suspected of deriving assets directly or indirectly from criminal activity. For those it establishes a case against, action is taken in the Courts to deprive or deny those charged of the assets and of the proceeds of their activity.
'Slab' Murphy has been said over a considerable time to have been the Chief of Staff of the Provisional IRA and has a farm which straddles the border between the Republic and Northern Ireland. He has just been arrested by the Criminal Assets Bureau.
The Bureau has an impressive record. I was a member of the Northern Ireland Select Committee which went to Dublin to examine its work. Our report was influential in encouraging the establishment of its equivalent in the UK, known as the Assets Recovery Agency.
The Agency is no doubt taking a close interest in developments over 'Slab' who has always had his farming boots either sides of the border.