herald

Wednesday 15 August 2018

Killers used tracking device to find victims of Tesco double hit

HITMEN used a military-spec tracking device to locate two innocent men shot dead at a Tesco filling station.

The hi-tech device was discovered by officers from the Garda Technical Bureau fixed to the underside of the Toyota Avensis car driven by cousins Glen Murphy (19) and Mark Noonan (23) on the night they were murdered.

The pair were shot dead in the forecourt of a Tesco filling station at Clearwater, Finglas, on November 23 last. It's believed they were murdered in a case of mistaken identity.

Detectives who examined the men's car after the shooting found a tracking device concealed in the rear of the vehicle. They believe it had been planted there on behalf of a major Dublin criminal, who had ordered a hit.

However, gardai are examining the possibility that the wrong car was selected for the trace and that the cousins were innocent victims. A man who is suspected of being the actual target of the attack has fled the country in fear.

Gardai now suspect that gangsters are using tracker devices to keep tabs on potential targets and suspect associates.

Gardai had been baffled by the Tesco killings given the lack of criminal background attached to the victims.

Glen Murphy (19) had convictions for criminal damage, but was not a major player. He also served a jail sentence earlier this year. His first cousin Mr Noonan was not known to gardai.

Detectives investigating the double killing have said that they are keeping all options open and were still investigating the two men's backgrounds to establish if they had fallen foul of a gangland boss.

But they have traced a man whom they believe was the intended target of the hit.

The main suspect for organising the hit is a Dublin criminal, now living in Ulster. Two of his associates, from Coolock, have also been implicated.

One of two automatic pistols used in the double murder had also been fired in two non-fatal shootings on the northside of Dublin, ballistic tests showed.

Officers came close to catching the filling station killers, travelling in a 06-D BMW 5 Series, after the murders but the gunmen were able to shake off the pursuing patrol car, reaching speeds of 200kph.

In addition to the tracking device, gardai have also been examining phone records of the men to determine whether they were 'lured' to the location.

hnews@herald.ie

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