Gardai in west Dublin are on high alert this weekend amid threats of retaliatory attacks by "dissident" republicans for last Thursday week's murder of "Continuity" IRA man, Liam Kenny.
Garda technical experts are also examining a haul of electronic equipment, computers and other republican paraphernalia found after Mr Kenny, 53, was shot dead at his Clondalkin home. They believe he was killed because he recently extorted €50,000 from a west Dublin dealer and was involved in two incidents in Clondalkin when firearms were produced and death threats made.
They also believe some of the equipment found after his murder was being used to carry out surveillance on west Dublin drug dealers in preparation for extortion demands or robbery.
Gardai now fear a tit-for-tat war between the so-called dissidents and drugs gangs like one that happened in north Dublin last year. During a period of six months after the murder of gang leader Eamon Dunne, who was shot dead in April last year, the dissidents and drugs gangs clashed violently. Four men were shot and several injured.
The "dissidents" on the north side of the city mainly style themselves "Real" IRA and are responsible for extensive extortion rackets as well as direct involvement in drugs.
Most of the former Provisional IRA figures who became dissident in the west and south of Dublin style themselves "Continuity" IRA, but this group fractured some time ago.
They are allied in the same rackets and gardai suspect they may come together to attack the "ordinary" criminal gang suspected of killing Mr Kenny, a father of four. Gardai believe he was in league with other self-styled dissidents in Limerick.
At first it had been thought that Mr Kenny was killed by rival republican extortionists, as there are frequent rows among them, but this was not the case.
Last week, a group of his associates issued a statement to a newspaper saying they were intent on killing "those responsible".
They said they were supported by other dissident groups.
Armed garda patrols including members of the Emergency Response Unit have been put in place in the area where the suspected drugs gang responsible for Mr Kenny's murder live.
Meanwhile, gardai do not suspect any organised crime link to the shooting dead of Eddie Flanagan, from Macroom Road, Coolock, who was shot dead at a party in an apartment in Santry, Dublin, on Wednesday night.
A 51-year-old man presented himself to Coolock Garda Station on Thursday and is being questioned.
A number of men who are believed to have been in the apartment left the area on foot and bicycles and gardai are asking them to come forward.
Mr Flanagan was shot twice and died at the scene.