By Cormac Looney
Saturday August 15 2009
TWO rival gangsters at the centre of the D22 feud have left west Dublin amid fears of reprisals a week after the murder of underworld hardman Pierce Reid.
The pair -- who live just doors away from each other on a Clondalkin street -- have not been sighted at their homes since the killing last week.
One of the men was a close pal of Reid, who is suspected of carrying out gun attacks on houses in Dublin 22 as part of the ongoing feud. This man and a close relative are regarded as key players in the Infamous D22 gang.
His rival, who lives just doors away, is also believed to have left Clondalkin for a period in the wake of the murder.
This man is active in the Bawnogue gang, which has emerged as a rival to the Infamous D22 in recent months, leading to the feud which in turn led to Reid's murder.
Although tensions remain high in Clondalkin in the wake of the killing, garda sources said that the absence of both men may cause the gangs to "hold fire", in the short term.
There have been no serious incidents of feud-related violence in the area, since Pierce Reid's funeral, and a major garda presence, including undercover armed officers, remains in the area. The garda operation will continue for the foreseeable future, sources said.
A week after the Reid killing, gardai are examining a number of theories to establish the motive behind the murder, and no clear line of investigation has emerged.
Most officers believe that the killing arose from a split in the 'Infamous D22' gang, which is headed by Karl Breen and whose chief enforcer was Pierce Reid.
Allegations of stolen drugs and other matters have arisen in the past 12 months, sources said, and this led to a split in the outfit.
The split has occurred between Breen's side and the so-called Bawnogue Gang, a group of former associates based in that area.
This led to Reid being murdered at Lealand Close in Clondalkin eight days ago. The 25-year-old was shot in the head a number of times.
Soon afterwards, a stolen grey-coloured BMW car, registration 08 D 26305, believed to be the getaway vehicle, was found burnt out at Lindisfarne Park. Gardai are appealing for information.
In the wake of the murder, the Bawnogue Gang scrawled graffiti on a local church describing their rivals as 'Infamous Rats'. This attack was carried out because the gangsters wrongly believed Reid's funeral was to take place at that church.
- Cormac Looney