Garda alert as gang target who declared 'war' returns to city from Spain
Published 14/07/2015 | 10:17
A criminal who declared "there's going to be war" after his pal was shot dead last month is back in the capital after spending over a fortnight in Spain's Costa-Del-Crime.
Jason 'Jay' O' Connor (37), who is considered the country's number one gangland target, survived two botched assassination attempts last month but is now back in his west Dublin bolt-hole.
Sources have revealed that the feared criminal is being constantly monitored by armed detectives amid fears that he may be targeted again, or his associates may go looking for revenge.
In the aftermath of an attempted assassination attempt on him last month, O'Connor reacted with a foul-mouthed tirade to a newspaper reporter.
"I'll tell you a story, there's going to be a f***ing war in Blanchardstown - they are f***ing dead, stone f***ing dead," he said. "They won't see the end of the week."
While O' Connor's shocking prediction has not yet happened, gardai are braced for more bloodshed in an ongoing feud, especially now that he is back in the country.
"This individual and his cronies are being watched very closely. The situation is still very serious," a source said.
O'Connor was previously in the headlines when he had his fingers chopped off with an axe in a horrific attack by Real IRA members under the direction of their boss Alan Ryan in May, 2013.
The former 'Westies' gang member, who is originally from Whitechapel Avenue, Clonsilla, had arrived at Dublin's Mater Hospital with two fingers missing from his right hand.
He had also suffered injuries to the back of his head consistent with a beating and torture.
One of the missing fingers was found in Fairview Park that evening and Gardai were alerted. Doctors later sewed the recovered finger back on to O'Connor's hand, but the second was not found.
Despite his injuries, O'Connor refused to identify his attackers, but detectives quickly established that Alan Ryan's mob were responsible.
Ryan was shot dead himself four months later, but O'Connor is not a suspect in that high-profile case.
O'Connor was also a suspect in the murder of a Lithuanian crime boss in 2013. Gintaras Zelvys was shot twice in the body with a handgun as he arrived with his wife to open up his 'cash for clothes' business in the Greenogue industrial estate, Rathcoole, west Dublin.
Detectives investigating the murder arrested O'Connor and two other Blanchardstown men in a special operation shortly after the murder but they were all later released without charge.
Sources say that associates of O'Connor are suspected of being linked to an attack which saw a former 'Westies' mobster being shot six times as he sat in a car in Hartstown in 2012, but there has never been an arrest in that case.
This feud has been ongoing for over a decade.