Monk flees abroad as gardaí look to quiz him on hotel hit
Tough anti-gang legislation will be used in investigation into feud murder at Regency
Published 26/05/2016 | 02:30
Crime boss Gerry 'The Monk' Hutch has fled Ireland as gardaí actively seek to question him over the Regency Hotel attack.
The move came as it emerged gardaí are using tough anti-gang legislation as part of the investigation into the murder of David Byrne at the Regency Hotel in February.
Hutch (53) is believed to have left the country some days ago and is "lying low" somewhere in Europe as he figures out his next move, according to intelligence sources.
A relative of the North Dublin crime boss is understood to have withdrawn almost €100,000 in the form of a bank draft which was then sent to him.
Hutch, whose nephew Gareth Hutch was shot dead on Tuesday, is also being actively targeted by hitmen working for the Kinahan drugs cartel who have reportedly been offered up to €100,000 to kill him.
Two other family members of Gerry Hutch - his nephew Gary Hutch (34) and his brother Eddie Hutch Snr (59) - have also been murdered in the ongoing feud between associates of the Hutch and Kinahan families.
Since the Regency attack three months ago and the bounty being placed by members of the Kinahan cartel on his head, armed gardaí are a familiar presence in Clontarf close to where Hutch lives.
The last time Hutch was seen publicly was at the funeral of his older brother, taxi driver Eddie Hutch.
He was sporting a long grey wig, with a baseball cap and turned-up collar and kept a low profile throughout the funeral.
Since the Regency attack - which was a retaliatory strike for the murder of Gary Hutch in Spain last September - members of Gerry Hutch's family have been told by gardaí that their lives are in danger.
His standing in the criminal underworld has plummeted, with many shocked that he was targeted by members of the Kinahan cartel in a pub in Lanzarote last January, just weeks before the murder of David Byrne in the Regency Hotel in North Dublin on Friday, February 5 last.
The former criminal mastermind grew up in Dublin's north inner city and was heavily involved in crime from an early age.He was suspected of involvement in a number of major robberies, including a Brinks Allied heist in Clonshaugh, Dublin, in 1995, in which a gang's seizure of IR£3m in cash was a record amount at the time.
He later claimed that he was a legitimate businessman since handing over €1.5m to CAB in full settlement of undeclared income in 2000.
Another close relative of the wanted gangster was released from custody yesterday afternoon after being questioned about the Regency attack.
Up to 20 individuals who were involved in the organisation of the Regency Hotel attack have been identified from cctv cameras across the north of the city.
Under the tough anti-gang legislation, which was introduced following the murder of Limerick man Roy Collins in 2009 and is used very rarely, a judge can grant gardaí permission to use special equipment in operations targeting serious criminal, terrorist or subversive activity.
In 2012, Galway brothers Michael and Edward O'Loughlin were originally jailed for nine years each after they had been secretly recorded by devices hidden in their car by gardaí.
The Court of Criminal Appeal later reduced the sentence to six-and-a-half years while noting that the sentencing judge had been in the difficult position of being the first to preside over such a case.