| 16.2°C Dublin

Mystery deepens over 'hit and run' on 'Border Fox'

Door-to-door enquiries by gardai in the Clontarf area have failed to find any witnesses to the alleged hit-and-run accident which left 'Border Fox' Dessie O'Hare lying injured on a footpath.

The former INLA renegade boss, released from a 40-year jail sentence under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement, has "no memory" of the incident reported to have taken place on Tuesday evening.

The absence of any witnesses has left gardai cynical about the initial report given to them by O'Hare that he was the victim of a hit and run in which a vehicle mounted a footpath at the junction of Seafield Road East and Seafield Avenue.

One theory being investigated is that he was beaten and then dumped out of a speeding vehicle in the upmarket suburb. O'Hare initially told gardai he was struck by a vehicle driven by a lone male but he did not even see in which direction it went.

Later in hospital he told gardai that he had no memory of the incident.

He is expected to be released shortly from the Mater Hospital where he was treated for a shoulder injury, a broken nose and cuts to his face.

Gardai are aware that O'Hare has been spending a considerable amount of time in the Clontarf area, mainly in the company of Eamon Kelly.

Kelly survived an assassination attempt last year near his Furry Park Road home in Killester, a short distance from the scene of this week's reported incident. The two are often seen socialising in local pubs.

O'Hare was released from prison in April 2006 after serving 19 years for kidnapping and mutilating Dublin dentist John O'Grady in 1987. During the kidnapping, a section of two of Dr O'Grady's fingers were hacked off by O'Hare using a hammer and chisel.

Gardai rescued Dr O'Grady, but O'Hare escaped and was eventually caught after a shoot-out in Co Kilkenny in which an accomplice was shot dead.

cmallon@herald.ie