13 men were arrested this morning as part of a garda operation targeting organised crime and drug trafficking.

Bullet proof vests, mobile phones, laptops, bank statements and slips, and a small quantity of cocaine are among the items seized as part of the raids, involving up to 300 gardaí in Dublin, Cork, Wexford and Cavan this morning.

They carried out searches of homes, business premises and other properties at 33 locations.

A large garda presence was on the scene in the Sheriff Street area of Dublin city this morning as part of the operation.

Those arrested range in age from 17 to 61. The 17-year-old was released on police bail pending an appearance before the Children's Court.

A 23-year-old was this afternoon charged and brought before the courts and remanded to appear again next Friday.

The remaining 11 are still being questioned at Store Street, the Bridewell, Mountjoy and Whitehall stations in Dublin, Togher in Cork, and Enniscorthy and Gorey in Wexford.

They are being detained under anti-gang legislation on suspicion of participation or organising the activities of a criminal gang and can be questioned for up to a week.

The operation is targeting an inner city Dublin criminal gang involved in drug trafficking, gun crime and a murderous feud during which in the last four years four men have been shot dead.