News Irish News

Saturday 21 September 2019

CCTV footage shows attempted murder bid by 'piggy-masked hitmen' on gang boss

Now-murdered gang boss avoided a previous bid on his life as pair of hitmen came calling to his home

Three weeks before the murder of Loyalist Malcolm McKeown, two would be killers wearing pig face masked tried to take him out at his Warringstown home
Three weeks before the murder of Loyalist Malcolm McKeown, two would be killers wearing pig face masked tried to take him out at his Warringstown home

Hugh Jordan

A GANG boss who was shot dead in his car last Monday escaped a murder bid last month because he was in jail.

Malcolm McKeown (54), who had links to the loyalist paramilitary underworld, was gunned down last Monday as he sat in his car outside a petrol station in Waringstown, Co Down,

Now, exclusive pictures show piggy-masked gunman battering the mid-Ulster mobster's door in Co Down four weeks ago, only to flee frustrated.

The Sunday World can reveal that the father-of-three was languishing in a prison cell when his would-be assassins came calling.

Images taken from CCTV footage recorded at McKeown's home and passed to us by a source close to the gangster show the frustrated pig-men waiting, poised to pull the trigger the second their quarry answered the door one month before his murder.

Eye witnesses who spoke to the Sunday World this week claim the men pictured here - one dressed in a blue fleece jacket and the other a blue body warmer - were armed when they approached McKeown's home.

Wearing jeans and trainers, they walked past a black BMW car parked outside.

And one of them entered the porch area of the property before repeatedly hammering on the front door.

At one point - anticipating the door was about to open - the men readied semi-automatic pistols secreted in the waistbands of their jeans.

But when the door failed to open, they quickly made off.

A man shot dead in Waringstown named locally as Malcolm McKeown
A man shot dead in Waringstown named locally as Malcolm McKeown

Sunday World inquiries revealed that as his would-be killers were pounding his door in Waringstown, Malcolm McKeown was in the most secure place possible - behind bars in Maghaberry Prison.

The crime boss was awaiting bail having previously appeared in court on aggravated burglary charges.

McKeown was a major drug dealer caught up in an escalating feud with a rival drugs gang.

A member of a notorious criminal gang, he has a long history of violent crime.

Police believe McKeown was behind the sickening double murder of drugs trade couple Hugh and Jacqueline McGeough in their Craigavon home 11 years later.

McKeown had paid an associate to kill the husband and wife team to avoid coughing up a £19,000 (€20,000) debt he owed to Hugh McGeough.

McKeown was charged with their murders but, ultimately, the charges were dropped.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News