| 13.1°C Dublin

Gardai on high alert as teen killer with 'Fat' Freddie links to be released from jail

Close

Lorcan O'Reilly was stabbed to death back in 2015

Lorcan O'Reilly was stabbed to death back in 2015

A young girl looks at tributes to the victim near the scene where Lorcan O'Reilly was killed

A young girl looks at tributes to the victim near the scene where Lorcan O'Reilly was killed

Collins Dublin, Gareth Chaney

Criminal 'Fat' Freddie Thompson

Criminal 'Fat' Freddie Thompson

Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

/

Lorcan O'Reilly was stabbed to death back in 2015

A major garda alert will be put in place for the release of a teenager who stabbed innocent Lorcan O'Reilly to death and is due to walk free from prison in the coming days.

The 19-year-old thug - who has close links to convicted gangland murderer 'Fat' Freddie Thompson - has been serving the closing months of his sentence with Thompson in Ireland's highest security prison in Portlaoise.

Since being sentenced to four and a half years for the brutal knife slaying in February 2017, the killer was first detained at the Oberstown facility for juveniles before being moved to the Kinahan cartel wing in Mountjoy Prison in November, 2018, when he turned 18.

"He has had a few disciplinary scrapes while in the prison system but nothing major," a jail insider said last night.

Gardai are expected to draw up a special policing plan ahead of his release later this month because it is expected to increase tensions in the south inner city.

"He will be closely monitored by gardai, but they are also hoping that he will interact with the probation services and perhaps finalise his education," a senior source told the Herald.

"He is young enough to be at a crossroads in his life - if he wants to make a change.

"A number of his local associates in the Kinahan cartel such as Liam Brannigan, Nathan Foley and, of course, Freddie are now locked up serving lengthy sentences, so this may be a chance for him to turn his life around without being under their influence.

"However, there is no guarantee that he can turn his life around and there are serious concerns about him being back on the streets. After all he is a very lucky boy that he is not serving a life sentence for the murder of Lorcan O'Reilly."

Fight

The thug, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was aged 14 when he stabbed Lorcan (21) to death. The innocent victim was killed after stopping a fight.

After killing Lorcan, he fled the country with his mentor Thompson but eventually returned and presented himself to gardai.

He was initially charged with murder, but later pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

Senior members of the deadly Kinahan cartel were involved in a brutal campaign of intimidation of witnesses against the teenager, who was convicted of the fatal stabbing at the Oliver Bond flats in Dublin during the early hours of November 1, 2015.

The teen was classified as a "foot-solider" in the deadly cartel by gardai and has been on the radar of detectives since his primary school days.

A number of witnesses to the killing were given detailed security advice by gardai and others had to move away from their south inner city homes because of the threats.

In the build-up to his proposed murder trial, it emerged that potential witnesses were warned that they would "get a bullet in the head" if they testified against the teen.

Officers said at the time that they were aware of the "constant threats" which had been issued in a number of inner city pubs and detectives "monitored the situation".

Gardai from Kevin Street and Kilmainham Garda Stations investigated the sinister death threats but no-one made an official statement against the gangsters who carried out the campaign of terror.

The violent teenager was quickly identified in the case and it immediately became clear that he has close links to the Kinahan cartel.

However, he became a figure of hate to some associates of tragic Lorcan and was hospitalised after he was given a severe beating in the early hours of New Year's Day, 2016.

A number of youths attacked the then 15-year-old shortly after 4am on New Year's Day, and the teenager suffered a number of serious kicks and punches to the head.

He was brought to St James' Hospital where he was treated for a number of hours before being discharged.

Hours later, he fled Ireland in the company of a gangster to Germany and then Holland before he returned home.

He was arrested and charged by gardai a number of weeks later.

He had previously presented himself for questioning at Kevin Street Garda Station with his two grandmothers a number of days after the stab attack.

However, officers declined to take a statement from the teenager before questioning him about the murder because they were awaiting more evidence to build a case.

At his sentencing hearing, Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy said the killer was guilty of "a very grave offence".

Describing the events that led to the stabbing, the judge said: "Approximately 23 people were congregated in the area and, during the course of the evening, an altercation occurred between the deceased and the accused."

The judge said that during the row the accused, then 14, had a hurley but left the scene after it was taken from him by Mr O'Reilly.

The boy returned a short time later with a knife and stabbed Mr O'Reilly in the chest.