herald

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Feared hood a suspect in two brutal gun murders

Walsh was investigated by gardai for suspected links to the murders
Walsh was investigated by gardai for suspected links to the murders

A gangster who yesterday pleaded guilty to firearm charges linked to a botched hit has been investigated by gardai for his suspected involvement in at least two gun murders.

Clondalkin hood James 'Nellie' Walsh (30) has also become a target for the deadly Kinahan cartel because they have blamed him for being involved in the plot to murder drugs trafficker Greg Lynch in a failed assassination attempt in October 2013.

Reckless criminal 'Nellie' first began to be noticed as a prominent gangland figure when he was investigated for the brutal murder of Dean Johnson (21) in the Moorfield Avenue estate in Clondalkin in May 2011.

Dispute

Gardai believe that Mr Johnson, who was not involved in crime, was targeted because of a "local dispute" that he was involved in with associates of 'Nellie' Walsh.

Sources say that after the Johnson murder, 'Nellie' became a much bigger player in the Dublin crime scene and ended up getting involved in a bitter dispute with a Clondalkin mob with close links to the Kinahan cartel. As the dispute intensified, the gang attempted to murder 'Nellie' in the early hours of August 24, 2013 at Harelawn Green in Clondalkin.

However, instead of shooting the criminal, an innocent 21-year-old man also called Dean Johnson, who had been socialising earlier with the mobster, was shot dead in a case of mistaken identity.

This infuriated Nellie's gang who decided to take revenge.

Within five days, criminal Jason 'Jay' Carroll (39) was fatally shot at his home at Cherrywood Drive in Clondalkin.

It later emerged that gangsters close to Carroll, who was a friend of cartel boss Daniel Kinahan, had raised more than €100,000 to have 'Nellie' shot dead. By this stage 'Nellie' was forced to live in a network of safe houses in the midlands, Newry and Dublin, but the volatile gangster still regularly took to social media to abuse his criminal rivals in bizarre rants.

By late 2013, it was revealed that associates of Walsh were planning to murder four rivals on the same night at the same time as the Clondalkin feud threatened to spiral out of control.

Vicious

However this did not happen and gardai observed that 'Nellie' who is known for his vicious temper was being seen more in the company of dangerous Crumlin-based criminals.

This is despite the fact that some of these criminals were linked to Greg Lynch whose gang were blaming him for shooting the drug dealer in the face just months earlier.

By the time that 'Nellie' was enlisted to murder Michael Frazer he had become an increasingly more "desperate and out-of-control" character.

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