Crime king blasted to death in city pub
Published 24/04/2010 | 08:31
THE most notorious gangland boss in the State was shot dead in a Dublin pub last night as he sat drinking with a couple of friends.
Armed robber and drug trafficker Eamon Dunne (33) was regarded as “public enemy number one” as gardai prepared files for the Director of Public Prosecutions under the new anti-gangland legislation.
His gang was included in the first three files sent to the DPP in December and Dunne was expected to face a charge of directing a criminal organisation, which carries a maximum life imprisonment sentence.
Dunne, from Dunsoghly Drive, Ratoath Road in Finglas in west Dublin, was socialising in the Fassaugh House pub at Fassaugh Avenue in Cabra when he was hit.
Eye witnesses said the gunman and an accomplice walked into the pub around 10pm, and singled out Dunne in the bar.
The gunman fired up to half a dozen shots, possibly from a 9mm handgun, and he was hit in the head. He died almost immediately.
Gardai arrived shortly and sealed off the pub. They recovered a number of shell casings on the ground beside the body.
Officers established that four men arrived in a silver coloured car outside the pub and two of them stayed outside while the gunman and his accomplice casually walked into the bar.
The gunman wore dark clothing, had a hoodie pulled over his face, and as Dunne slumped to the floor he and his accomplices jumped into the waiting car, which sped away.
Gardai said the shooting bore the hallmarks of a “contract” hit. Dunne had been among a group of 20 people celebrating a fortieth birthday party when the shooting took place.
There was a large Garda presence at the scene from six stations around the city. Officers said Dunne had a list of enemies “a mile long” and had warned him several times that his life was in danger.
Last night gardai were interviewing other customers in the pub and examining footage taken from CCTV cameras in the vicinity.
Dunne was currently on bail, awaiting trial on a charge of conspiracy to rob around €1m from a cash in transit van outside a Tesco supermarket in Celbridge, Co Kildare, in November 2007.
He was believed to have been responsible for the murder of at least a dozen people as he carried out a savage campaign of violence against rival gangsters or others he believed could pose a threat to him.
Dunne came to prominence after he took control of the remnants of a major Dublin gang following the murder of its leader, Martin “Marlo” Hyland in December 2006.
The gang fragmented following Hyland's shooting in a house in Finglas and Dunne, aided by an older Dublin crime boss, took control of the outfit and recruited other armed robbers and drug traffickers.
Some of his victims had been responsible for murders, carried out on his instructions. He traded on his reputation as a ruthless killer and used it to frighten off potential rivals, using his “heavies” to tackle anybody who dared to interfere with his lucrative crime business.
Dunne quickly filled the vacuum created by the murder of Hyland and became “public enemy number one” as the Government brought in tough new laws, that included stiffer penalties for gangland crime and powers for gardai to detain suspects for up to a week for questioning without charge.
He was regarded by senior gardai as a psychopath and had recently set up a sideline buying out drug debts from other traffickers and then using his firepower to intimidate the targets into paying them, plus his commission.
Last January he was linked the double murder of Brendan Molyneaux (45) and Paddy Mooney(58) at Pearse House in Pearse Street in Dublin.
The gang boss is believed to have been more directly linked to the murder of John Paul Joyce (30), the drug trafficking Traveller, whose body was found at the back of Dublin Airport in January this year.