Violent thug Declan Fat Deccy’ Smith (32) was one of Alan Ryan’s closest associates and he would meet the same grim fate as his pal just 18 months later.
Smith was shot dead in in front of stunned onlookers on a bright and sunny day in north Dublin.
But if anything the murder of Fat Deccy’ was even more shocking as it happened outside a crèche after Smith had dropped his young son off at the Little Rainbows facility at Holywell Avenue in Donaghmede shortly before 9am on March, 21 this year.
Smith was blasted once in the face from close range with a shotgun and the lone gunman, who was wearing a balaclava, then sprinted from the bloody scene. Smith died of his horrific injuries in Beaumont Hospital a week later and there was never a chance that he would be given a republican funeral.
After all he was the chief suspect in the murders of Edward Burns (36) and Joe Jones (38). The pair, who were members of the Continuity IRA in Belfast, were killed within an hour of each other in March, 2007 in a bitter dispute involving stolen cash and missing weapons.
But despite being the victim of a punishment attack by his former IRA comrades in January, 2013 the most likely theory as to who killed Smith is a gang from the Priorswood area of north Dublin.
Smith and his close pal Alan Ryan previously kidnapped and tortured a senior member of this gang in an unsuccessful attempt to steal guns from the gangster just weeks before Alan Ryan was shot dead. Sources say that the gang vowed revenge for this incident and gardai are working on the theory that this was the motive for the shocking shooting.