'Fat' Freddie moves up hit list as paranoid Christy Kinahan continues purge of henchmen
Published 28/09/2015 | 06:45
Former crime kingpin 'Fat' Freddie Thompson is high on a hit list drawn up by Spanish based drug-lord Christy Kinahan as he attempts to rid his organisation of henchmen he believes are stealing from him.
The leader of the drug distribution empire is believed to have given the go-ahead for Thursday's execution of Dubliner Gary Hutch (34) who was chased down and executed in cold blood on the Costa del Sol.
Kinahan was said to have sanctioned the hit in the belief that Hutch had double-crossed him and stolen more than €100,000 from his profits.
A similar fate was dealt out to Gerard 'Hatchet' Kavanagh (44) and his brother Paul (27) in two separate murders within six months of each other in Spain and Dublin.
Both were suspected of collecting debts for Kinahan, but not passing them on.
Kinahan used only to have to worry about outsiders threatening his empire, but greed, suspicion and mistrust has now led to internal battles threatening the organisation from within.
Kinahan is believed to be sending out a message to his crew that loyalty is demanded and transgressions are punishable with execution.
Thompson (34) is said by insiders to have moved closer to the top of Kinahan's hit list now that the Kavanagh brothers and Hutch have been scratched off it.
Another former enforcer, Paul Rice (44), is also said to be on the list after a falling-out with Kinahan's mob.
Rice had carried the casket of Hatchet Kavanagh after his murder in September last year, but he was nowhere to be seen at the funeral of Paul Kavanagh in March this year.
Dozens of armed gardai were involved in a major operation against Rice on October 9, 2014, shortly after Hatchet's funeral, at a time when his debt-collection business for the cartel was said to be booming.
Tensions were high during the raid at Rice's Tallaght home, but he was not arrested during the operation.
In the weeks after Paul Kavanagh's death it emerged that Rice was in a dispute with the cartel and had been spotted in the company of rival Scottish criminals in the 'Costa Del Crime'.
It is also believed that a dossier prepared by Spanish police on Hutch and Thompson, which was used to extradite Thompson to Spain in November 2011, exposed the crime empire to deeper scrutiny, which was obviously unwelcome by Kinahan.
That dossier used bugged telephone conversations and undercover observations to bring Spanish police to the conclusion that both Hutch and Thompson were senior lieutenants for the Kinahan gang.
Both Thompson and Hutch were close friends and associates, and trusted deeply by Kinahan.
They both also escaped death in 2008 when they were sitting in the BMW X5 that was riddled with bullets in the murder of another trusted enforcer, Paddy Doyle.
Whether he shows up for Hutch's funeral in Dublin remains to be seen.
Hutch's remains are due back in Dublin later this week as fears grow that more people may be killed.