herald

Tuesday 24 October 2017

Gardai seize €120k from gang linked to 'Guinea Pig' murder

Mark 'Guinea Pig' Desmond
Mark 'Guinea Pig' Desmond

A drug gang linked to the murder of Mark 'Guinea Pig' Desmond have been dealt a massive blow after gardai seized more than €100,000 in cash from them.

Officers from the Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau (DOCB) swooped on two properties in the Islandbridge area of the city, where they discovered the large sum of cash.

In total about €120,000 in notes was seized during Thursday's raid. Gardai believe the money came from the proceeds of crime.

Cocaine

A man in his 30s was arrested for money-laundering offences, and has since been released without charge. A file will now be prepared for the DPP.

This man has close links to slain James Kenny McDonagh, whose remains were discovered in the Wicklow mountains in January 2010.

Sources have also revealed that the crime group, which is mainly based in Ballyfermot, has become one of the primary suppliers of cocaine in the west Dublin area.

An associate of one of Desmond's many victims is also a senior member of the gang and criminals linked to the group targeted in the money-laundering operation are currently being investigated for Desmond's murder.

The 'Guinea Pig' was shot dead in Griffeen Valley Park, Lucan, last month.

The 41-year-old career criminal was the suspect in at least four murders and had also been investigated for several serious assaults, as well as the rape of minors.

He was charged but never convicted of the horrific Canal Murders in 2000.

The suspect list for Desmond's murder is extensive due to his links with a number of groups during his 20-year involvement in crime.

Botched

However, a primary focus of detectives' inquiries is whether a gang who attempted to murder Desmond in 2010 were behind his killing last month.

During the April 2010 incident, three man tried to shoot the 'Guinea Pig' as he drove a quad bike in the Memorial Park, Ballyfermot.

Although this incident was never reported to gardai, officers identified the three men allegedly involved in the botched hit.

At least one of the men involved in that attack is linked to the gang who were targeted in Thursday's operation.

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