Gardai fear a low-level criminal could end up murdered over an escalating intimidation campaign which saw his house burnt out in a daylight attack.
An out-of-control Dublin criminal, who has become heavily involved in the local drugs trade, is suspected of being behind the firebombing, after his associate's jeep was burnt out hours earlier.
The man, aged in his mid-20s and from south Dublin, was recently arrested in relation to a terrifying abduction in which a man was taken across a number of counties over an outstanding debt.
Local detectives are now investigating him over an ongoing campaign against a low-level criminal who is believed to owe a debt of up to €10,000.
Sources said that the target of the attacks, aged in his early 20s, has also been formally warned by gardai that his life is under threat.
He has been previously served a Garda Information Message, known as GIM form, in which detectives notified him of a credible threat and gave him security advice.
It's believed a car was also burnt out in his front garden in recent weeks, which led to the man going to ground.
There was nobody at home when the latest attack happened in Drimnagh at 3pm yesterday.
A large number of emergency services rushed to the scene including members of the Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB ) to deal with the blaze.
The previous night a luxury vehicle owned by a close associate of the out-of-control criminal was burnt out outside his Crumlin home which is suspected of leading to the home being firebombed on Tuesday.
A source told the Herald: "The man, whose house was targeted, is in significant debt and has been targeted on a number of occasions. He has no clout and has been warned of a threat to his life and there are genuine concerns that he will end up dead as a result of this.
"The man orchestrating the violence is becoming a bigger player in the drugs trade in the area and is a prime target for the local detectives and drugs units.
"He is under investigation for incidents in separate counties and his gang appear to be growing in the drugs trade," the source added.
Gardai suspect that the gang, which includes several family members, are involved in sale and supply of drugs while also having involvement in armed robberies.
He is suspected of carrying out a debt collection campaign across the country which has led to people in separate counties being targeted.
Only recently, a man aged in his 30s was officially warned of a threat to his life, after being assaulted and abducted outside his home in the east of the country.
The criminal was arrested in relation to the incident but was later released without charge pending a file to the DPP.
Gardai have said that no arrests have yet been made in relation to the firebombing of the house on Tuesday afternoon.
"A report was received that petrol was poured on the front door of the house which was then set alight. No other damage was caused. No injuries sustained and investigations are continuing," a spokesman said.