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Lonely end for Dunne - the man who infested our streets with heroin


Larry Dunne was cremated at the weekend

Larry Dunne was cremated at the weekend

Larry Dunne was cremated at the weekend

The story of the man who was blamed for introducing heroin to Ireland came to a very low-key end on Saturday evening when his body was cremated after a secret ceremony in Mount Jerome.

It is understood that a small crowd was present for the final chapter in the sordid tale of Larry Dunne at Mount Jerome Crematorium at Harold's Cross on the capital's southside.

No death notice giving details of Dunne's final arrangements was published and the former drug trafficker's local Church of the Holy Shepherd in Churchtown was not given any details of the cremation.

When contacted by the Herald yesterday, Dunne's older brother Christy 'Bronco' Dunne would not confirm whether he was in attendance at Mount Jerome at the weekend and simply said: "It is history now."

Larry Dunne (72) died at 3pm on Monday of last week in St James's Hospital where he was being treated for catastrophic self-inflicted stab injuries.

He had been rushed to the hospital from his home in Carrickmount Drive in Rathfarnham a day earlier.

Dunne - one of the most notorious criminals in the history of the State - was in the advanced stages of a battle with lung cancer.

Despite his reputation which was enhanced when he famously said "if you think we're bad, wait till you see what's coming after us" after he was handed a 14-year jail sentence for heroin dealing in March, 1985, Dunne had not been an active criminal for well over a decade or more.

Dunne introduced heroin into Ireland in the late 1970s after it became widely available in Europe following the Iranian revolution.

He had more than 40 criminal convictions, including for the sale and supply of heroin and cocaine.

In 1985, Larry was jailed for 14 years for distributing heroin, marking the end of his family's reign in the trade.

He was found guilty after a circuit court trial in June, 1983, but he had absconded on the opening day of the case and the trail continued in his absence.

The trial was told that when gardai raided Dunne's corporation house they found heroin, cocaine and cannabis resin.

Although unemployed, the drugs baron had moved to a home in the Dublin mountains then worth IR£100,000 in 1982 while on bail for his offences.

In his absence Dunne was found guilty of being in possession of drugs for supply.

Dunne had fled to Portugal but he was arrested there and then extradited back to Ireland where he was given the 14-year sentence on March 25, 1985.

He was one of the first drug dealers in Ireland to use more junior criminals to carry drugs for him - often for very little cash reward - a trend that continues in organised crime to this day.

It is understood that the then flashy and ultra-rich drugs trafficker gloated when other criminals said that "Larry doesn't carry" but obviously his luck ran out when he was busted by gardai and in his latter years Dunne lived a modest and quiet life in the working class Carrickmount Drive housing estate.


This was the same property where he was busted with the drugs 40 years ago and when arrested all that he said to gardai was "Look, I'm accepting responsibility for everything and that's all I'm saying".

In time, bigger drugs traffickers such as Christy Kinahan and John Gilligan would emerge but 40 years ago, Larry Dunne was Ireland's number one drugs trafficker.

In an era long before the Criminal Assets Bureau was set up, the criminal who had been born into abject poverty in a flats complex in inner city Dublin in February 1948, loved to flaunt his wealth from his heroin trafficking enterprise and he drove expensive cars and lived a champagne lifestyle.