herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Mum fears son's brutal killer will never be charged

A BRUTAL hitman, suspected of being involved in two gangland murders, is highly unlikely to be charged it emerged last night as the mother of one of his victim's spoke of her terrible pain.

The suspect who is in his 40s and lives in a south inner city flat is described as "completely ruthless".

He was previously arrested by detectives investigating the murder of Michael Kelly (27) who was shot dead as horrified commuters on a Luas tram watched in July, 2013.

The same gunman is suspected of "large degree" of involvement in the gun killing of serial burglar Christopher 'Git' Warren (35) in December, 2012.

SICKENING

However, detectives have been faced with a wall of silence in both cases, despite numerous arrests. Last night, Mr Kelly's mother Mandy Keane made a heartfelt appeal about the sickening murder of her only son.

"This has been just horrible for our family, there is no getting over this. Why did they do this to Michael? They did not need to do this.

"Years ago the disagreement that Michael was involved in would have been sorted out with a fist fight but not anymore. It's like these people don't even have a soul."

Mr Kelly, from St Teresa's Gardens, died after he was blasted three times and one of the shots hit his chest close to the Luas Red Line, near the Grand Canal at Davitt Road in Dublin's south inner city.

His inquest heard last week that gardai knew of no threats on him.

At least three women have been arrested by gardai investigating Mr Kelly's murder and questioned about withholding information about the savage slaying before being released without charge.

"I would appeal for anyone who has information to come forward now even at this very late stage," the heartbroken woman explained.

"People do not need to be afraid, they can give information in confidence. A tiny bit of information could make all the difference," she said.

Ms Keane also revealed that her beloved son has left behind three children all under the age of nine including a little girl who was only four months old when Michael was shot dead.

"It breaks my heart - Michael's oldest is nine now and was only seven when his dad was murdered. The two girls were only babies and they go down to the grave and what they think is that their daddy lives there," she said.

"If the people who have information on this had any idea on how it has destroyed our family and ruined our Christmases they would surely come forward," she added.

Gardai are particularly interested in the suspected hitman who lives in the south inner city.

"Gardai are looking very closely at this individual - in the case of Michael Kelly, he and his associate arranged a beating for him but instead of that lured him to his death and shot him," a source explained.

Beating

"There are similarities between what happened Michael Kelly and Christopher Warren in terms of a beating being arranged and gardai believe that this individual was in the thick of the action on both occasions but these are complicated investigations."

While officers are confident that Michael Kelly was shot over a debt, they believe Warren was murdered after a personal row. Both victims knew each other from the same locality.

In February 2013, a man in his 60s who was well known to Warren was released by investigating gardai at Mountjoy Garda Station after being questioned for a day.

The OAP - who is not believed to be the shooter in the case was one of five suspects arrested in the Warren investigation and a senior source described his suspected involvement as "both bizarre and tragic."

kfoy@herald.ie

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