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Saturday 24 August 2019

Slash-horror mobster 'Jay' nailed by pub CCTV

CCTV footage from the Paddocks pub in Clonee shows Jason 'Jay' O'Connor carrying out the horrific slash attack
CCTV footage from the Paddocks pub in Clonee shows Jason 'Jay' O'Connor carrying out the horrific slash attack
Thug Jason 'Jay' O'Connor

One of Ireland's most notorious gangland criminals was given a three-year jail sentence yesterday for a vicious pub assault.

However, when time served and prison remission are taken into account, Jason 'Jay' O'Connor will be a free man before the end of next year.

O'Connor (41) has been in custody since being arrested by armed gardai last November 5.

They called at his home as part of an investigation into a slash attack at the Paddocks pub, Clonee, on November 3, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court was told.

He threatened two detectives executing a search warrant at the house, saying they would meet the same fate as their murdered colleague Det Gda Adrian Donohoe.

Our exclusive CCTV images show a crazed O'Connor carrying out the pub attack.

Yesterday, Judge Martin Nolan said the victim had been viciously slashed, but noted O'Connor's plea was a valuable one in a case where the victim would have been a reluctant witness at the very least.

Our photos show O'Connor entering the pub and assaulting a local man over an alleged debt.

The thug can be seen with a Stanley blade in his hand and swinging at the man, who was slashed in the neck, chest and stomach.

Refused

The victim initially refused medical treatment but was taken to hospital.

He did not wish to make a statement to gardai, co-operate with the investigation or complete a victim impact statement.

The garda investigation relied on this CCTV footage of the incident, and O'Connor was named as a suspect.

The entire attack lasted 19 seconds before O'Connor fled the pub.

After identifying the gangster, gardai decided the Emergency Response Unit (ERU) should breach the door of O'Connor's home in Whitestown Grove, Mulhuddart, at 7am.

There were three people inside - O'Connor, his partner and an infant.

O'Connor had been in bed, was in boxer shorts and was handcuffed by the ERU before local gardai came in and changed the cuffs.

A documentary film crew was accompanying the gardai at the time and an extract of an audio recording caught by the film-makers' microphones was played in court.

"Come in me cul de sac the next time, see what happened your mate up in Drogheda, ya prick ya, at the credit union, that's what you're going to f**king get," O'Connor told the gardai.

"You f**king watch and you watch as well, McLoughlin.

"F**king scum reporters and all outside the gaff."

A detective told the court the comments were implied to refer to the death of Det Gda Donohoe in Co Louth, and the threats were taken seriously.

Yesterday, O'Connor pleaded guilty to making threats to kill or cause serious harm to Det Sgt Shane McCartan and Det Insp Joseph McLoughlin.

O'Connor had 64 previous convictions, most of them for road traffic offences, but they also include possession of knives, burglary and possession of a mobile phone in prison.

Judge Nolan said that during the follow-up search of O'Connor's home, a degree of consternation must have been caused to the occupants of the house to find a camera crew outside with equipment.

Judge Nolan imposed a three-year sentence for the assault and one-year concurrent sentence for the threats.

The sentence is to be backdated to reflect time in custody.

Objections

After being locked up late last year, O'Connor was refused bail because of major garda objections.

He was also arrested in connection with the Hutch-Kinahan feud murder of Kane McCormack in December 2017.

O'Connor was brought from Mountjoy Prison to Ashbourne Garda Station in March before being released without charge and sent back to jail.

Following McCormack's murder, gardai raided O'Connor's home as part of their investigation.

He and his associates have been involved in a separate bitter feud in west Dublin that resulted from a fall-out between former members of the infamous Westies gang.

O'Connor, who has survived a number of attempts on his life, was a suspect in the murder of Lithuanian crime boss Gintaras Zelvys in 2013.

He was arrested over the hit before being released without charge.

He survived at least two assassination attempts in 2015. In the aftermath of one of these incidents, he reacted with a rant directed at a newspaper reporter.

This was the murder of Keith Walker (36) in the car park of Blanchardstown Pigeon Racing Club, on Shelerin Road, Clonsilla, on June, 12, 2015.

"I'll tell you a story, there's going to be a f**king war in Blanchardstown - they are f**king dead, stone f**king dead," he told the journalist.

O'Connor was previously in the headlines when he had two fingers chopped off with an axe in an attack by the RIRA in 2012.

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