Wedding murder link to bomb left at home of 'The Businessman'
Gardai are investigating whether a pipe bomb placed outside a house is linked to a relative's alleged involvement in a shocking gun murder at a wedding earlier this year.
The Herald can reveal that the bomb was discovered outside the home of Willie 'The Businessman' McGinley on Wednesday evening and caused the busy N4 motorway to be closed for a number of hours.
Armed gardai and the Army bomb disposal team spent hours at a huge mansion, which is called Crystal Manor, on Wednesday afternoon.
Sources say that McGinley (73) has become a target after a relative of his was released on £70,000 bail in relation to the wedding murder this week and ordered to live in Co Fermanagh.
"This situation is very serious and dangerous and it seems that 'The Businessman' knew it was coming.
"The blinds in that house had been drawn for a number of days," said a local source.
'The Businessman' came to prominence after building his fabulous Crystal Manor house on the outskirts of Longford. Every Christmas the property is lit up in a spectacular show of lights.
He built up his wealth as a trader at casual markets, but in recent years was found guilty of dealing in stolen goods.
His son Brian was convicted last year of playing a part in an aggravated robbery which targeted the family of a prominent Athlone businessman.
In February, 'The Businessman' received a warning from gardai that a Traveller gang was plotting to kill him, and the events of Wednesday show that this is a genuine threat.
The Defence Forces issued a statement about the incident on Wednesday evening confirming that they dealt with a viable device.
"The EOD team arrived on scene at 5.28pm. The device was then taken to a secure military location for further examination where it was confirmed as viable. The scene was declared safe at 5.55pm.
"Items of an evidential nature will be handed over to the gardai to assist them with their investigation," the statement read.