herald

Saturday 14 December 2019

Feud kingpin killed days after 'debrief' over €3m drug bust

A bullet hole at the scene
A bullet hole at the scene

Slain drug lord Richie Carberry attended a "high-level debrief meeting" in the UK to discuss a massive garda drugs bust on the weekend before he was shot dead last week.

The 39-year-old father-of-three met up with some of his haulier contacts who Essex police investigated as part of their probe into the death of 39 migrants found in a trailer there last month.

Carberry had no link to the Essex investigation but was associated with a UK-based smuggling gang simply because of his drug-trafficking activities, according to sources.

"Carberry was known as the 'go-to' man in terms of getting drugs moved from continental Europe, especially Spain, to Ireland in trucks run by smuggling gangs," a source said.

Cannabis

"However, his crew was hit by a massive seizure in Co Louth two weeks ago and he travelled to the UK to have a high-level debrief meeting about how it happened - it is not known if this has anything to do with his murder."

An alliance of different north city organised crime gangs are millions of euro out of pocket after the garda bust, which was part of an international surveillance operation.

Cannabis herb with an estimated street value of €3.2m concealed in a legitimate load of fresh vegetables at Ballymascanlon near Dundalk a fortnight ago was seized by elite gardai.

There have been no arrests yet in relation to the gun slaying, with sources revealing last night that a reckless teenage gunman from Coolock who had close links to slain gangster David 'Fred' Lynch is being blamed in underworld circles.

However, the Drogheda-based Maguire gang which Carberry was feuding with has decided to "take the credit" for his murder, according to sources.

"As each day goes on, this is looking more and more like a Dublin job than as simply being part of the Drogheda feud," a senior source said last night.

Last week, the Herald revealed that a dangerous hitman linked to Carberry has blamed drug lord 'Mr Big' for the gangland killing in a secret recorded jailhouse phone call.

The phone conversation between the gun-for-hire and an associate was made from a Dublin jail just hours after Carberry was shot dead outside his Bettystown, Co Meath, home.

Carberry was gunned down after getting out of his car in the Castlemartin Drive estate at 11.40pm on November 4.

Though the killing had been linked to the ongoing Drogheda feud, gardai are now actively investigating the involvement of Dublin gangs.

Suspicious

Detectives are searching for anyone who may have witnessed suspicious activity in the Castlemartin Estate and Eastham Road area leading up to November 4.

A garda spokesman said: "Gardai are appealing to anyone who may have seen Peugeot Bipper Van 08 D 124410 between September 27, 2019, and November 4, 2019.

"Gardai are also appealing to anyone who may have observed a Blue Ford Fiesta 06 D 80706 in the vicinity of Eastham Court, Eastham Road or the general Bettystown area in the days and weeks leading up to Monday, November 4, 2019," the spokesman added.

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