Tuesday January 18 2011
THIS is the glamorous young woman caught running guns for gangland criminals.
Deirdre Moran (26) was nabbed by gardai when she took delivery of an assassin’s handgun from members of The Don’s criminal outfit in Dublin.
Today Moran – who twinned her gunrunning activity with being a shop manager – was beginning a five year jail sentence. She told gardai when she was arrested after a visit to Liffey Valley retail park that she had been to buy her son a PE top.
Inside her car, detectives from the Organised Crime Unit found a revolver supplied by Eamonn Dunne's drugs gang.
She was shipping it to another gangland outfit in the Northwest.
The shop manager lived a high-flying lifestyle while dating a leading gang member known to The Don.
However, Moran has just spent her first day in prison where she began a five-year sentence for possession of the silver Smith & Wesson revolver.
A source told the Herald: "This is the reality for people who get caught up with gangs.
"There may be a glamorous lifestyle in the short term but sooner or later you'll pay."
Moran is believed to have picked up the gun on behalf of a senior member of a Sligo-based drugs gang.
The mum of one, who is originally from the UK, was previously in a long-term relationship with a leading member of the drugs gang.
Mr Alan Toal, defending, said that Ms Moran had paid the price for getting into a relationship with the wrong man.
"She had an unblemished character and now by being involved, falling in love and having a child by the wrong man, she is now here," said Mr Toal.
Moran, of Glengar, Larkhill Road, Sligo, had pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of a Smith & Wesson .22 Long Rifle Revolver at the Lucan bypass on the M4 on September 1, 2009.
But she was found guilty by a majority verdict and given the mandatory sentence of five years.
Born in Manchester, she moved to Sligo when she was 14, and managed a clothes shop.
She picked up the gun in west Dublin and was stopped by gardai a short time later.
She claimed during the trial that she had travelled to Liffey Valley Shopping Centre from Sligo to purchase a navy jumper for her son's PE class as shops in her town had sold out.
Moran said she purchased the jumper in Dunnes Stores and placed the item behind the driver's seat.
She denied she came to Dublin to collect a gun and denied that she met anyone who gave her a gun. She also denied that she knew the gun was under the passenger seat of the car.
The gardai had received intelligence about the gun transfer, and followed Ms Moran's car.
They pulled her over as she drove on the M4.
The gardai claimed to have received "very specific information" about the gun and were told it was being transported in a black Opel Corsa registered to Ms Moran and driven by her.
Detective Sergeant Gerry McGrath said he briefed his team on the possible hand-over of a gun in the Lucan area.
He said they believed an Opel Corsa was being used to transport a gun from a member of an organised crime gang.
He said he got confirmation that she had the weapon and directed his men to the Lucan bypass where they stopped Ms Moran. A silver gun was found in a sock underneath the front passenger seat.