herald

Wednesday 22 January 2020

Gardai on alert for return of crimelord 'The Penguin' after death of his brother

George 'The Penguin' Mitchell
George 'The Penguin' Mitchell

Gardai are on high alert that crimelord George 'The Penguin' Mitchell will be back in Ireland for the first time in many years to attend the funeral of his older brother and close criminal associate.

Patrick 'Paddy' Mitchell (73) died at his home in the Gallanstown area of Ballyfermot on Sunday morning after a battle with cancer.

His funeral is due to take place at the Garden Chapel in Mount Jerome Cemetery and Crematorium tomorrow and his body is due to repose in a Ballyfermot funeral home.

Details of his death have not been made public, leading to a belief that 'The Penguin' plans to travel home for the "hush hush" event.

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"The Penguin was very close to his older brother but it is not yet known if he will come back to Dublin for the funeral," a senior source told the Herald.

"In any event specialist gardai will be watching events very closely - Patrick Mitchell was a major criminal in his own right and part of an international criminal enterprise led by his younger brother."

Despite being suspected of a lifetime of involvement in organised crime, Patrick Mitchell's most serious criminal conviction came in April 2003, when he was jailed for two years and fined €35,000 for failing to make tax returns worth more than €1m.

Judge Michael White noted Mitchell had acquired 13 properties in various areas of Dublin from 1980 onwards under fictitious names and under names of his associates.

He rented these out to various tenants but failed to make tax returns for the years 2000, 2001 and 2002.

Judge White said Mitchell had set out to deliberately defraud the State of substantial revenue. He imposed concurrent sentences of two years on each of the three counts and fined him €5,000 on the first count, €10,000 on the second and €20,000 on the third.

Patrick Mitchell lost his battle with cancer
Patrick Mitchell lost his battle with cancer

A Revenue Commissioner officer and Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) officer, referred to in court as 'Officer No 5', said Mitchell signed an agreement with the CAB agreeing to pay off his tax liabilities through selling six out of the 10 properties that were the focus of the investigation.

Mitchell, a used-car salesman and scrap dealer for most of his working life, had bought several properties in various areas of Dublin which he then rented out.

He bought his first property in 1980 with what he claimed was money he had saved while working in England.

In June 2003, the CAB sold five houses seized from him for €750,000 in total. It sold the houses in Dublin for sums of between €100,000 and €237,000 each.

Two in Rialto Villas made €202,000, while another in Cremona Road, Ballyfermot, made €160,000. A house in Galtymore Drive in Drimnagh was sold for €175,000 and one in Kennelsfort Road, Palmerstown, went for €237,000.

The houses were all in poor repair but the CAB secured more than €770,000 for the five properties.

"Many people will remember Paddy Mitchell as a 'wheeler dealer' type of individual whose greatest sin was that he idolised his drugs trafficker brother George," a senior source said.

"But the truth is that Patrick was a major criminal in his own right and had a history of being particularly nasty to women."

Evidence of this trait in his personality was outlined at the 2002 inquest into the death of a tragic 33-year-old woman found dead from a drugs overdose in a flat at Shangan Road, Ballymun, in October 2001.

The woman had been beaten up by Mitchell, who was described as being part of the crime underworld, and was a "very frightened girl", her mother said at the hearing.

Sharon Kelly, mother of Carolyn Enaise Kelly, said her daughter - who had a drug problem from the age of 13 - had been in a relationship with Patrick Mitchell, who failed to appear at the inquest.

A statement from Deirdre McDonald, a friend of Enaise's, told how she would visit Enaise at the flat where Patrick Mitchell was often present.

Despised

"She told me to watch what I'd say in front of him because he was a part of the underworld in crime," it read.

The court heard Enaise had been beaten up by Mitchell because he believed she had gone back on drugs.

Ms Kelly told the coroner that she had a phone call from her daughter saying: "He's going to kill me, he's going to kill me."

"In the last two weeks of her life Enaise was in fear of her life," the inquest heard.

A post-mortem found Ms Kelly died from an overdose of methadone and sedatives.

In a strange twist, while heavily involved with his brother George's drugs trafficking mob, it is understood that Patrick Mitchell "despised" drug addicts and users.

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