Gardai arrest suspect in execution of delivery man
Published 23/02/2010 | 05:00
THE suspected gunman behind the execution-style killing of bread delivery man Daniel Treacy in Limerick yesterday was arrested last night.
He was detained by gardai in Moyross on the north side of the city shortly after 10pm and was taken to Henry Street garda station for questioning about the murder.
He was being held under Section 50 of the Criminal Justice Act 2007, an anti-gangland measure which allows gardai to hold him without charge for up to seven days.
Gardai feared the killer of Mr Treacy was planning a series of murderous attacks, it was learned last night.
Officers believe that the gunman intended to shoot a number of targeted figures as part of his deranged revenge campaign.
He intended to carry out the fatal shootings in revenge for the fatal beating of an apprentice electrician, Darren Coughlan, who died in 2005.
Last night Limerick was a city on alert.
Additional members of the Garda's regional response unit were drafted on to the Limerick streets from their base in Cork as officers warned possible targets to take extra precautions.
Mr Treacy's brother Richard was one of three men jailed for six years for the manslaughter of Mr Coughlan after a trial in the Central Criminal Court in Dublin in July 2007.
Daniel Treacy (35) was shot dead by the lone gunman, who was not masked, at a petrol station in the city yesterday morning. They arrest followed a citywide search for the gunman, whom gardai believe could have been "high" on drugs at the time of the shooting His description was widened had been circulated circulated to all units in the region.
Gardai are satisfied that the shooting is not part of the deadly feud in the city although another of the victim's brothers, Owen, is under round-the-clock protection as a result of providing key evidence against five men for the gangland murder of Limerick crime boss Kieran Keane. Other family members have also received protection.
Authorities appealed for no retaliation to the fatal shooting. Supt Frank O'Brien, who is heading up the investigation, said that while he was aware of concern among the public at the return of gun violence to the streets of Limerick, he was "very confident" of solving this latest murder.
Meanwhile, detectives continued to question a close associate of the suspected gunman. He was detained in the city within hours of the shooting and was also being questioned last night at Mayorstone station.
The 29-year-old man can also be detained without charge for up to seven days.
And gardai were last night trying to trace a red Toyota Corrolla (registration 96 LK 1814) which was seen in the area around the garage at the time of the attack.
Mr Treacy, a father of two, was shot three times n the head with a handgun at the Topaz petrol station on the Ennis Road on the northside of the city shortly before 6.30am yesterday after he made a delivery to the shop.
He lived in Dromroe, Rhebogue, Limerick, with his family and had begun his day's work when the attack took place.
The gunman ran up to him inside the shop and opened fire in front of staff. Mr Treacy died at the scene.
Gardai were last night studying CCTV footage from the premises.
The Treacy family have been haunted by fears that they could be targeted because their son, Owen, had given evidence against crime boss Kieran Keane's attackers.
The family's security is constantly monitored by gardai.
Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy said yesterday that his officers were following very definite lines of inquiry and he looked forward to significant progress in the near future.