Tuesday 20 August 2019

Security alert after hoax device put on car as feud fears increase

The suspect IED device attached to the door of a car in Coolock.
The suspect IED device attached to the door of a car in Coolock.

Associates of a volatile gangster only freed from jail last weekend are being investigated for placing a device on a car, which led to a major security alert in north Dublin yesterday.

The device was eventually declared to be "a very elaborate hoax" after being examined by Army bomb disposal experts who were called to the scene in Coolock, by gardai.

The alarm was raised at 9.30am when the large and cylindrical object was found taped to the driver's door of a silver VW car.

It was secured in place with strips of yellow tape and made very obvious by its colour and positioning.

Gardai believe the device was meant to be found - possibly as a warning - rather than cause harm, but did not take any chances and called in the Army.

Gardai cordoned off the middle section of the road, but residents were initially allowed to stay in their homes.

Inspected

However, when the bomb squad arrived and the device was inspected by remote-controlled robot, the cordon was widened to both ends of the street.

Local people were told to evacuate their homes and the robot was then deployed once more.

It appeared to fire a charge into the suspect device, creating a loud 'crack' sound.

A bomb disposal squad member, dressed in protective clothing and helmet, then went to retrieve the device's remains before handing it over to gardai for a forensic examination.

"This is being described as a very elaborate hoax,'' a senior source told the Herald.

''However, what can't be ruled out either is that the device could have been put together by someone who simply did not know what they were doing. In either case the device was not viable."

There have been no arrests and sources say the target of the hoax has no involvement in crime or local feuds.

One line being examined by gardai is that people known to the target have been involved in a bitter dispute with a 26-year-old criminal only released from jail last Saturday.

This argument is one of a number of complicated feuds which have broken out in Coolock since the gun murder of drug dealer Sean Little in May.

Sources say that since being released from jail, the 26-year-old has been "running amok" and has been "issuing threats, left, right and centre".

Chased

In an incident on Wednesday, it has emerged that he got chased by a "posse of young fellas" in Darndale when he called to a house and accused another criminal of burning out his girlfriend's 4x4 earlier in the summer.

Specialist gardai have been closely monitoring the activities of the recently-released criminal, as well as his 29-year-old criminal brother.

The elder sibling has been heavily involved in organised crime for years and was officially warned in June that there was a credible risk to his life.

The garda warning happened after there was an attempt to murder him in the Darndale area in early June, but the shooter's gun jammed.

The target was sitting in a vehicle at the time and is understood to know the identity of the criminal in the botched hit.

Meanwhile, the bomb disposal unit was also called out to another suspicious device in the Finglas area yesterday.

It was found in the Valley Park Road area but was also declared a hoax.

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