Friday, 26 November 2010

Gardai fear cousins shot on orders of ‘drug tax’ brothers

Irish Herald
Gardai fear cousins shot on orders of ‘drug tax’ brothers

By Cormac Byrne, CRIME DESK

Friday November 26 2010

GARDAI fear the two cousins gunned down in Tesco were victims of a RIRA gang enforcing a 'drugs tax'.

The Republican gang has been demanding a 20pc cut of drugs profits from all Dublin's major criminal outfits -- including 'Fat' Freddie's gang.

It's now thought the unemployed cousins were murdered because they refused to hand over money to the RIRA gang, led by three brothers.

Mark Noonan (23) and Glen Murphy (19) were executed in a hail of 15 bullets after stopping at the Tesco filling station in Clearwater, Finglas.

The Republican brothers who are leading the Real IRA racketeering gang were kicked out of the Continuity IRA and also have links to an INLA protection gang. They have been attempting to control the pub door security business in Dublin to run the weekend “recreational” drugs market in the city.

More recently they have approached all the major crime gangs, including ‘Fat Freddie’ Thompson’s outfit, and one major hotelier demanding a 20pc slice of all their takings.

“They are seriously violent. They are capable of anything. Now you see them in the frame for taking out two low-level gang members. What’s next?” said a senior source today.

The victims were thought to be 'bag men' for a drugs gang.

Gardai came within seconds of catching the three killers in a 06D BMW 5 Series but the gunmen were able to shake off the pursuing patrol car, reaching speeds of 200kph. The getaway car was heading in the direction of Dundalk on the M1 when it was lost.

Gardai are looking into the phone records of both of the deceased to determine whether they were lured to their deaths.

CCTV footage shows the two gunmen and an accomplice entering the forecourt of the filling station and driving around a number of times five minutes before the killing.

Gardai suspect that this evidence could prove the murdered cousins were ambushed.

“The Real IRA gang led by the brothers has been involved in several murders to date.

“They have been threatening so-called ODCs (ordinary decent criminals) demanding cash,” said a source.


“Just recently ‘Fat Freddie’ Thompson was tooling up with grenades, rocket launchers and AK47s to take on this outfit and protect his own patch,” the source added.

The murdered cousins did not have connections with any of the major drugs gangs in the city. Gardai are examining whether the victims had called to the murder scene by arrangement — but their behaviour suggests they were not aware of the killers' presence.

An examination of the two men's phones should confirm what calls they either made or received in the hours before their murders. A 60-strong garda team, consisting of local gardai and officers from National Bureau of Criminal Investigation (NBCI), is investigating the puzzling killing.

Gardai have said that the possibility the men were killed in a case of mistaken identity was slim given the nature of the hit.

“The clinical nature of the shootings indicates that this was a very well-organised hit and it would be very surprising if they made such a basic error,” an officer said.

Detectives are also examining both victims' backgrounds to see of they were involved in any personal disputes.

One of the men’s aunts, Barbara Murphy, said the family were “simply devastated”. “Mark's girlfriend is in such shock that she collapsed a few times. We don't know why this happened but we want whoever did this caught,” she said.

The grief-stricken mothers, sisters Geraldine and Michelle, are now staying with another sister as they attempt to cope with their loss. Gardai are appealing for anyone with information to contact the incident room at Finglas Garda Station on 01- 6667532, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda Station.

- Cormac Byrne, CRIME DESK

Monday, 22 November 2010

ERU on streets as new Fat Freddie war erupts

Irish Herald

By Cormac Byrne

Monday November 22 2010

ARMED gardai have been deployed to south Dublin after gang boss Fat Freddie ordered a sickening attack on one of his own lieutenants.

Heavily armed units from the Emergency Response Unit have been running checkpoints across Crumlin and Drimnagh to quell gangland tensions.

A row has erupted within the ranks of Fat Freddie Thompson's drug trafficking gang which threatens to explode into all-out war.

Thompson ordered the attack after his lieutenant made lewd comments about an old flame of his, leading to a vicious 'Glasgow smile' slashing.

A Glasgow smile is a nickname for the result of cutting a victim's face from the edges of the mouth to the ears. The cut leaves horrific scars which form what resembles a smile.

He was slashed across both cheeks in a bid to leave his face permanently disfigured. He also suffered a laceration to his forehead and was heavily beaten in the attack.

The victim was once a leading member of Freddie's gang.

"There is a real fear that extreme violence could escalate in south Dublin," a source told the Herald.

"The ERU operation has been successful so far but there are players out there hell-bent on revenge."

Elite officers from the crack armed unit have been operating roving checkpoints around South Dublin to quell tension on the area.

The atmosphere had been at fever pitch in recent weeks after nights of Halloween violence which involved gun and grenade attacks linked to the King Ratt crime gang.

The gardai spend only about 20 minutes at each random checkpoint before moving to another location.

The operation's objective is to thwart the activities and movements of gangland criminals and sources say the plan is working.

It also provides gardai with intelligence on the current state of the most active gangs, as well as the hierarchy and make-up of the gangs, which are constantly evolving.

Thompson and his gangland pal Gary Hutch are currently in hiding in Amsterdam's criminal underworld after European Arrest Warrants were issued for the pair by Spanish police.

Authorities in the Costa Del Sol wish to quiz them over the killing of gun-for-hire Paddy Doyle in 2008 in the Costa Del Sol and their involvement with Christy Kinahan's drugs empire.

Under the terms of the warrant the gangster can be arrested by gardai on sight and deported to Spain.


Spanish authorities believe that the men's accounts of what happened that day could be the key to discovering Doyle's killer.

The pair may face charges for withholding information if and when they are detained.

Doyle was travelling in a jeep along with Thompson and Hutch in Estepona in February 2008 when their vehicle was stopped.

Doyle was shot twice in the head, while his pals narrowly avoided injury in the attack.

Fat Freddie has been travelling between Holland, England and Ireland in recent months and has been carrying out attacks and intimidation tactics on dealers in Dublin.

- Cormac Byrne

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Armed gardaí crack down on gangland blackspots with checkpoints across Dublin

Sunday Tribune

Ali Bracken, Crime Correspondent
The elite Emergency Response Unit (ERU) are operating 'roving checkpoints' in parts of north and south Dublin IRELAND'S most elite and heavily-armed gardaí have been deployed to Dublin's most active gangland blackspots as part of Operation Hybrid.
Last weekend, members of the Emergency Response Unit (ERU) mounted a checkpoint in the south inner city as part of the force's current crackdown on serious organised criminality. The ERU is a specialist armed intervention unit under the Special Detective Unit. At present, the elite officers are operating "roving checkpoints" in parts of north and south Dublin. The armed officers, in conjunction with local gardaí, have been mounting checkpoints in parts of Ballymun, Finglas, Blanchardstown, Crumlin, Drimnagh, Clondalkin, Ballyfermot, Ronanstown and Tallaght.
The gardaí spend only about 20 minutes at each random checkpoint before moving to another location.
The operation's objective is to thwart the activities and movements of gangland criminals and sources say it is having the desired effect. It also provides gardaí with intelligence on the current state of the most active gangs, as well as the hierarchy and make-up of the gangs, which are constantly evolving.
Random checkpoints and car searches have been putting organised criminals under pressure and their visibility is a constant reminder that their activities are under surveillance.
Tensions among criminals in Ballyfermot and Clondalkin are at an all-time high. Four men have been murdered in a feud in the past 14 months.
The most recent victim was shot dead just two weeks ago. The ERU has been mounting frequent checkpoints in Ballyfermot and Clondalkin.
ERU training is carried out at the garda Tactical Training Unit in Templemore. The specialist gardaí also receive training with the Ranger Wing of the Irish Army, and in the past have been trained by the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team. The officers are sometimes trained abroad in Germany, the UK and the US.
ERU officers are required to qualify three times per year in all firearms being used by the unit.
Training consists of in-house tactical training on an ongoing basis from the ERU's own firearms instructors and refresher range practice. Weapons they are trained to use include the Remington 870 pump-action shotgun and Uzi sub-machine guns.
November 21, 2010

Monday, 8 November 2010

Seven held in gang investigation

Irish Times

Gardai arrest 13 in major operation | 08/11/2010
Gardaí are continuing to question seven men arrested as part of a major operation targeting gangland crime earlier this week.
Six men are being held at Garda stations in Dublin and another man is being questioned in Co Wexford, a Garda spokesman said today. Six others, questioned in Dublin, Cork and Wexford, have since been released.
Some 300 gardaí met at Garda Headquarters, Phoenix Park, Dublin, and in Wexford and Cork stations in the early hours of Monday before raiding over 30 locations in a co-ordinated pre-dawn operation spanning counties Dublin, Cavan, Wexford, Cork and Kildare.
Gardaí seized a small quantity of cocaine and confiscated mobile phones, computers and bulletproof vests during the raids, as well as records linked to property investments which were taken from the offices of solicitors and accountants by members of the Criminal Assets Bureau.
The target of the so-called “super raid” was a drug-trafficking gang based mainly around Sheriff Street in Dublin’s north inner city but with criminal contacts nationally. The gang has been involved in a feud in recent years with another faction also based in Sheriff Street. The feud has cost five lives, two of them this year.
The raids were the latest chapter in an almost year-long specialist investigation into the feud. The probe has been stepped up in recent weeks following a near-fatal shooting last month in Swords, Co Dublin, and the revenge gang beating of a rival criminal in the north inner city just minutes later.
According to Garda sources, the target gang has forged close links with arguably the two biggest crime gangs in Ireland: the McCarthy-Dundon gang in Limerick; and a gang in Finglas, Dublin, once led by murdered criminal Eamon Dunne.
The operation was co-ordinated from Pearse Street Garda station by Chief Supt Pat Leahy, under Assistant Commissioner Mick Feehan, who is in charge of policing in Dublin, and Deputy Commissioner Martin Callinan, who is in charge of all operations across the force.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Three held over separate gangland incidents in Dublin

C LALLY Irish Times 1/11/10
GARDAÍ HAVE seized drugs and a firearm and have arrested three people in unrelated gangland incidents in Dublin at the weekend.
In one of the operations, gardaí seized cannabis and cocaine. They believe the Dublin gang behind the haul has joined forces with a Vietnamese-led crime gang involved in large scale cannabis-growing operations here.
As part of the investigation into the Dublin gang, gardaí raided a house on Glasmanna Road, Finglas, north Dublin, and found drugs with an estimated street value of about €320,000.
Among the haul was cocaine valued at €210,000, cannabis plants valued at €10,000 and cannabis pollen valued at €110,000.
Cannabis pollen is effectively dried cannabis plants crushed and compressed into slabs.
The slabs are sold in 1kg quantities, usually for about €4,000 wholesale, to Irish gangs for sale on the streets. The street value of 1kg of cannabis pollen is between €12,000 and €14,000.
A man and woman in their 20s were arrested at the house in Finglas when the cannabis and cocaine find was made at 1.15pm on Saturday. They were taken to Finglas Garda station for questioning.
Gardaí believe the cannabis plants and pollen were sourced from one of a number of mainly Vietnamese-led gangs now operating here.
These gangs have become involved in cultivating crops of cannabis in sophisticated growing operations in rented houses across the Republic over the past two years. Last Thursday, gardaí found the latest cannabis grow house in Cullenmore, Ashford, Co Wicklow, where a crop of plants valued at €500,000 was discovered in a large rented house.
The discovery was the 15th grow-house found, involving seizures of plants valued at more than €4 million, since July as part of the Garda National Drugs Unit specialist grow-house investigation, Operation Nitrogen.
In another operation at the weekend, not related to the Finglas cannabis and cocaine find, gardaí seized a gun from a 19-year- old man in East Wall in Dublin’s north inner city.
The handgun was seized at East Road at 2.30pm on Saturday during an intelligence-led operation by local detective and drug units from the Garda’s Dublin north central division.
The man arrested at the scene is from Coolock, north Dublin.
He is believed to be aligned to a drugs gang involved in localised feuding with other factions in Coolock.
He is also associated with one of two feuding gangs based around the Sheriff Street area in the north inner city, not far from where he was arrested on Saturday.
The feud between the rival Sheriff Street factions has claimed five lives since it began about eight years ago, with two of the fatal attacks having taken place this year.
The man arrested in East Wall is being held under section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act at Store Street Garda station in the north inner city. He can be detained for up to 72 hours without charge.