Friday, 9 September 2005

Two brothers planned latest gun murder in gangland feud

By Tom BradySecurity Editor

Friday September 09 2005
TWO brothers are believed by gardai to have plotted the vicious murder of a drug dealer at his home.

The cold-blooding shooting of Mark Glennon (32) was the latest incident in a bloody personal feud between two factions who had formerly been associates in a major trafficking gang in the capital.

Senior gardai believe Glennon was set up by his killers and lured away from the security which had foiled a previous attempt on his life last month.

Glennon, a father of one, was shot four times outside his home at Hazelwood Crescent in Hartstown, West Dublin, on Wednesday afternoon. He had earlier been talking to his father, Frank, and a friend, Stephen Byrne, in his garden.

He then left the others and walked around the corner of his estate, apparently to meet somebody who had contacted him.

Glennon ran back towards his house, hotly pursued by his killer, who pumped four bullets from a handgun into his upper body and made an escape in a Toyota Camry car.

The Camry was found burnt out shortly afterwards at Meadow Crescent and last night gardai were trying to establish if the car had been stolen recently in the Templeogue area on the southside of the city.

On August 27 last a gunman fired five shots at Glennon's house, but the attack was foiled by bullet-proof glass which he installed along with CCTV cameras shortly after the feud erupted. The tit-for-tat attacks began last year after a pub row between some of the former associates spilled over and led to a serious split in the gang.

Until then, the gang had been regarded as the "new kids on the block" who were destined to take control of the lucrative drugs trade in the area from the notorious Westies gang, whose leaders Shane Coates and Stephen Sugg were said to have been murdered in Spain.

Police intelligence indicated that Coates and Sugg had double-crossed a Russian mafia leader they were due to supply with a shipment of drugs. It was alleged that the Irishmen had taken the Russian cash before providing the drugs and in retaliation were abducted and then murdered. Their bodies have not been found.

The row between the two factions escalated last New Year's Eve after two members of the group opposed to Mark Glennon had been arrested for questioning about another shooting.

On their way home, 30 shots were fired at the two from a machine gun, and Glennon and his brother, Andrew (30), known as 'Madser', were blamed. Last April, 'Madser' Glennon was shot dead at his home in Clonee, Co Meath. The two brothers who are prime suspects in the planning of Wednesday's murder are accused of involvement in that killing.

Gardai said last night they had no plans to dramatically alter tactics in Operation Anvil, which has resulted in the arrest of almost 300 suspected lawbreakers and seizure of more than 100 firearms since it began last May.

Anvil is primarily focused on west Dublin and senior gardai say their covert and overt operations in the division have prevented other serious gun attacks. Justice Minister Michael McDowell yesterday denied claims by local Labour TD Joan Burton that he was complacent about the level of crime in the area.

Mr McDowell said gardai had unprecedented resources to put into tackling gangland crime, but Ms Burton said west Dublin remained under-policed.

Labour's justice spokesman Joe Costello claimed the Glennon shooting underlined the need for a fundamental review of the Garda approach to gangs and gun murders.

- Tom BradySecurity Editor

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