By Cormac Looney
Thursday July 23 2009
GARDAI have identified a suspect for the double murder of two Dublin men who have been missing for a year.
Officers investigating the disappearance of David Lindsay and Alan Napper, who have not been seen since 23 July 2008, believe that a south Dublin hitman may have murdered both men in a house in Co Down.
The suspect is known to gardai and is said to have connections to a drug dealing gang in the south inner city, and to a number of criminals in west Dublin.
He is not affiliated to any one gang and has connections "across the spectrum", garda sources said.
The two men are believed to have fallen foul of a crime gang and were lured to their death, after meeting other men in Clane, Co Kildare, a year ago today.
Officers suspect an individual has who has a reputation in gangland circles as a gunman, and is suspected of carrying out at least one other gangland murder in the last two years.
But it is feared a lack of forensic evidence -- most notably the two men's bodies -- may hinder any prosecution in the case.
The men's blood was discovered in a property at Rathfriland, Co Down, in May.
The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), who are assisting the gardai in the case, believe the pair may have been buried in a field nearby, but no traces of their remains have been found.
However, gardai are satisfied that both men were murdered in the Co Down house.
A bogus passport seized at Dublin Airport last September led gardai to suspect for a time that the pair had fled Ireland for Thailand, but this was later ruled out.
The focus of the investigation switched last April to a remote property on the Drumdreenagh Road in Rathfriland, which was rented by a Co Down man to a man from the Republic. According to reports, he was considered a good tenant.
The homeowner, who is not suspected of having any involvement in the disappearances, moved back into the house and discovered bloodstains on a floor there in August, at which point the PSNI were notified.
Lindsay (38) and Napper (39) travelled to Clane, Co Kildare, where they were last seen, from Baldoyle, north Dublin, on July 23 last.
The parents of David Lindsay reported him missing to gardai on July 27 last year, while a brother of Alan Napper contacted the gardai. A major search operation, stretching across Dublin, Kildare and the border counties, was launched.
- Cormac Looney