BROKE John Gilligan is trying to get his hands on €20,000 to get back into business, sources believe.
The convicted criminal has been calling on former associates in a desperate cash drive since his release from jail.
Gilligan, pictured, has also been looking for a phone number for Spanish-based drugs kingpin Christy Kinahan, possibly to ask him for a 'loan'.
His efforts to raise funds, combined with his bravado since walking out of jail after a 17-year term for drug trafficking, are believed to be the main factors in an attempt to kill Gilligan at a Dublin pub last Thursday.
Gardai have warned the 61-year-old, who is barely weeks out of jail, that there is an active threat on his life but they will not be taking on the role of his bodyguards.
Christy Kinahan is currently under investigation by a number of police forces, and is believed to a main supplier of drugs to Ireland and Britain. Sources say Gilligan has been trying to get in touch with him and is trying to "tap him for a few quid".
But Gilligan's arrival on the scene is being treated with scorn and has lengthened his list of enemies.
"Gilligan has been knocking on doors and mouthing off, acting the hard man with an air of importance, but the truth is in today's criminal world he is a nobody and an annoyance," one source said.
"He has obviously already stood on toes since his release because somebody wants him dead.
"He thinks he's still the main man, but he's acting the clown. He hasn't a bean and nobody wants anything to do with him.
"He's been looking for €20,000 to set himself up but he hasn't a hope," the source added.
Gilligan escaped the attempt to shoot him because he was in a different pub to the one the hitman went into last Thursday.
A gunman wearing a motorcycle helmet walked into the Half Way House pub on the Navan Road at around 4pm asking: "Where's Gilligan?"
He even went upstairs and checked an empty function room before leaving.
Customers called gardai, who arrived just as the potential killer was being driven off in the direction of Finglas.
He escaped, but dropped the 9mm handgun on the Ratoath Road.
Gilligan is living in a property close to his former Jessbrook home in Co Kildare.