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Thursday 21 September 2017

Cartel thug banged up in top-security Spanish jail after 'mystery man' visit

Armed police burst into the bedroom
Armed police burst into the bedroom

A top Kinahan gang member, who has been languishing in a Spanish jail since he was arrested by heavily armed police, has been moved to a high-security prison in Madrid.

The move was ordered by prison officials after the 34-year-old gangster received a "suspicious visit" by a "mystery man".

The thug - who cannot be named for legal reasons - was arrested in north-east Spain last month in connection with the murder of Eamon 'The Don' Dunne, a major crime figure.

Dunne was gunned down at The Fassaugh House Pub in Cabra in 2010.

Confusion remained last night over whether the north inner city thug was willing to be extradited to Ireland.

Sources said gardai have not received notice of an extradition court hearing in Madrid.

Tough

The gangster has been locked up since August 9, when Spanish police - operating on a gardai tip-off - stormed a hotel room in Tarragona, 60 miles south of Barcelona.

However, it has now emerged that, just days after his incarceration, he was transferred to a tough jail in Madrid.

"An Irishman claiming to be a relative attempted to visit him," said a source. "But prison guards became suspicious of the mystery man and he was denied access."

The gangster was then moved to a more secure prison, where he is allowed no visitors.

Heavily-armed Spanish police make their way along hotel corridors to the gangster’s room
Heavily-armed Spanish police make their way along hotel corridors to the gangster’s room

Details of his life on the run emerged last night, including a recent bizarre incident in which he narrowly escaped arrest while on holiday in Portugal. Before local police could pounce, the gangster - a slightly- built fitness fanatic - escaped through a bedroom window.

"This man was on the run for almost seven years and, because of his links to the cartel, he was never short of money at any stage," said a source.

"He travelled around on a false passport.

"A fuller picture of his life on the run is emerging all the time and it seems that he spent much of it in southern Spain moving from apartment to apartment.

"He always stayed in ground-floor properties, so that he could jump out a window if police came knocking."

The gangster is considered a "trusted" member of the international crime syndicate with access to large amounts of cash.

He is believed to have used a number of aliases since he went on the run and is wanted by police throughout Europe for various crimes.

The north inner city flats where he lived are now the focus of heavily-armed gardai checkpoints as officers try to keep a lid on the long-running Kinahan-Hutch feud.

Days after the gangster was arrested as he slept beside a woman in a hotel room, Spanish police released a video of the raid.

Footage showed the elite team, armed with semi-automatic weapons fitted with flashlights, burst into the room.

They can be heard shouting, "las manos, las manos" - Spanish for "hands up, hands up" - before yelling in English, "don't move".

The gangster had checked into the hotel using a false identity.

The armed police were part of a special operations group in Catalonia that is often called on to rescue hostages or take out terrorists.

Spanish police revealed they had come close to catching the wanted gangster in November at Malaga Airport on the Costa del Sol.

Network

He escaped after crossing a busy motorway as officers closed in on him when he went to meet relatives arriving from Ireland.

The gangster is a close associate of another key cartel thug and a criminal who was arrested in connection with the murder of Dunne.

It is believed Dunne was killed because the murders he was involved in were drawing gardai attention to the cartel's crime network.

Dunne had assumed control of the Finglas-based drugs and armed operation previously led by Martin 'Marlo' Hyland.

His gang was a major importer of drugs, supplying them to smaller operations throughout the country.

Dunne is suspected of being involved in up to 15 gangland killings before his murder by the cartel.

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