herald

Tuesday 16 January 2018

Freddie's €100k to kill witness

‘FAT’ Freddie Thompson’s gang has agreed to pay €100k to anyone who kills a State witness.





The gangsters have clubbed together with other criminals and there is now a €100,000 price on the head of protected witness Joey O’Brien.



But because they can’t get at Mr O’Brien – Thompson (below) and fellow criminals have turned on his innocent sister. Louise O’ Brien has also been targeted by associates of murderer Peter Kenny, convicted on her brother's evidence. Ms O’Brien fled her Dublin home in the wake of the conviction of Peter Kenny (28) – jailed after her brother, Joey, gave evidence against him.



Kenny (28), from Rialto, was given a mandatory life sentence last month after being convicted of the murder of drug dealer John ‘Champagne' Carroll (33), shot dead while socialising in Grumpy Jack's Pub in the Coombe in February, 2009.



O'Brien's family and his girlfriend's family in the Coombe have been targeted with pipe bombs and threats before and during the trial over his decision to turn supergrass. In one incident, a taxi owned by a member of O’Brien’s girlfriend’s family was blown up outside his south Dublin home. Joey O'Brien, from Crumlin, his partner and children and other family members have been given new lives as part of the Witness Security Programme, probably outside the jurisdiction.



However, his sister Louise was not included in the secret programme but has been forced to flee her south inner city home with her children because of the campaign of terror. Sources have revealed that Louise was verbally threatened, branded a “rat” and even spat at on the street because of her brother's decision to give evidence. “What he did had absolutely nothing to do with Louise – it left her in a very vulnerable position. She has been advised to get out of Dublin and that is what she has done,” explained a source.



In one of the most serious incidents, a close male associate of Ms O'Brien was given a “severe hiding” close to their home by three criminals armed with baseball bats. CRIMINALS Sources say that one of the criminals involved in the baseball attack was a convicted heroin dealer from the south inner city who is a major target for gardai under antigangland legislation.



It is understood that death threats were made against Ms O' Brien during the course of this extremely serious assault which left the victim battered and bruised. The vicious assault was carried out with the approval of ‘Fat’ Freddie’s gang. During the murder trial, O'Brien denied being a garda informer for several years before the 2009 killing. He agreed that by the time of the killing he was a drug dealer at a significant level and used to sell drugs to “anybody, including new users, recreational users and addicts”.



However he didn't begin taking drugs until he was 19 and was a recreational user, never becoming addicted to substances. O'Brien also admitted that he committed a large number of other criminal offences, including credit card fraud. He said that by the summer of 2005, his life was under threat as he had fallen out with a wellknown, notorious criminal, who had taken a shine to him as a teenager. O'Brien agreed that this drugs boss came down heavy on him and that he told a garda that this individual was threatening to shoot him over the debt and for informing on him to the gardai.



O'Brien agreed that his father, who had been in the army all his life, had to put up some money to get this criminal off his back. He agreed that at the time of John Carroll's killing, he (Joey O'Brien) was socialising seven nights a week, taking cocaine, getting taxis everywhere, “could drop” €3,000 or €4,000 an hour in a bookies and owed €8,500. However, he denied driving the gunman to the scene that night in order to make €15,000. After being arrested, O'Brien told gardai that his role in the murder was to burn the motorbike used in the killing at a housing estate in Harold's Cross – he told detectives that Peter Kenny was the gunman in the hit on Carroll.



O'Brien confirmed that Peter Kenny walked into the pub wearing a helmet and fired a number of shots at ‘Champagne' Carroll with a semi-automatic weapon.



hnews@herald.ie



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