A NOTORIOUS Limerick criminal has been arrested by gardai investigating the murder of a nightclub bouncer who was shot dead outside his home.
Brian Fitzgerald was murdered in Corbally on the outskirts of Limerick city on November 29, 2002.
Gardai in Limerick arrested a 34-year-old man at his home in the city this morning.
The arrested man is a well known criminal who is a senior figure in the McCarthy-Dundon criminal gang in Limerick.
He has recorded convictions both here and in the UK and is being questioned by detectives at Henry Street garda station in Limerick today.
He returned to Limerick in recent years after serving a lengthy prison sentence in England.
Detectives believe the arrested man ordered the murder of Brian Fitzgerald after the bouncer refused to allow drug dealers – connected to the McCarthy-Dundon gang - access to Doc’s nightclub in Limerick.
As a result, Fitzgerald’s home was shot at in 2001 and his car was destroyed with paint.
The criminal threatened Fitzgerald over not allowing drug dealers into the popular student nightclub and the bouncer went to gardai and made a complaint.
Having received a suspended prison sentence for violent disorder before he threatened Fitzgerald, the criminal knew a further criminal charge and conviction would result in his imprisonment.
Hired hitman James Martin Cahill (28) from England was recruited to murder Fitzgerald. He was paid €10,000 to carry out the gun attack.
Gary Campion – a feared killer from Moyross – assisted in the plot and execution of the shooting.
When Brian Fitzgerald – a married father of two - returned home from work on the early hours of November 29, 2002, Cahill emerged from nearby bushes and opened fire.
Fitzgerald was hit and ran into the road with Cahill following him and shooting several more times.
Fitzgerald collapsed and Cahill walked up to him and shot him in the head at point-blank range as he had been instructed to. Cahill escaped as a pillion passenger on a motorbike driven by Campion.
The 9mm handgun used to murder Brian Fitzgerald was later found dumped in a river at Annacotty. It had been made in England by two gun enthusiasts and sold onto the McCarthy-Dundon gang in Limerick.
Cahill was later arrested after he was caught with an Uzi sub-machine gun in Dublin. While awaiting trial for that offence and fearing for his life behind bars, Cahill confessed to Fitzgerald’s murder in 2005 and provided officers with the background to it.
He was sentenced to life imprisonment later that year as the garda investigation intensified.
In 2006, Anthony Kelly of Cragg House, Kilrush, Co Clare, brothers; John and Dessie Dundon of Hyde Road, Limerick and Gary Campion from Moyross were all charged with Fitzgerald’s murder.
However at their trial in 2007, John Dundon was acquitted by order of the judge while Anthony Kelly and Dessie Dundon were found not guilty of the murder.
The jury found Gary Campion guilty of Fitzgerald’s murder.