Man on trial in Spain for Gary Hutch assassination is now facing life in prison
A SPANISH court will today begin hearing evidence in the trial over the murder that triggered the bloody Hutch-Kinahan feud.
James Quinn, from Dublin, who is a nephew of Martin 'The Viper' Foley, will be tried in Malaga for the murder on the Costa del Sol of Gary Hutch, a nephew of Gerry 'The Monk' Hutch, on September 24, 2015.
Mr Quinn, who has also been questioned over the unsolved 2014 shooting of innocent former boxer Jamie Moore, insists he has been wrongly identified as the gunman who killed Hutch outside his home near Fuengirola.
Prosecutors in Spain have warned that they will seek to have him jailed for life if convicted.
He would become only the second person ever to receive such a sentence since the country's return to democracy in the late 1970s.
Hutch (34) was killed after being chased around a residential estate. He was shot in the head and chest.
The murder set in motion a gang war that has so far led to the murder of at least 15 people, in Ireland and internationally.
Gardai believe the total figure is 18, when killings with indirect links are taken into account.
An eight-page indictment against Mr Quinn claims he shot Hutch on the orders of an "unknown person". It said he had a getaway driver, who has so far been unidentified.
"While his companion or companions waited inside the vehicle, the accused got inside the residential estate," it said.
"After replacing the baseball cap he was wearing for a balaclava to avoid being recognised, he waited for Hutch in the estate car park armed with a 9-millimetre Glock 26 semi-automatic pistol, whose serial number had been erased, and a .45 semi-automatic Colt 1911 pistol, neither of which he was licensed to carry".
It alleged that as Hutch app-roached his vehicle moments later, the accused began to shoot at him in a surprise attack.
"Initially the victim was able to flee towards the inside of the estate, but the accused chased him and fired more than 15 shots," the indictment said.
"Finally, the accused caught up with him when Hutch was on the ground and virtually motionless because of the bullets he had been hit with.
"Giving him almost no chance of defending himself, he shot him twice in the head from close range and killed him."
The indictment said the killer tried to burn out the getaway car, but did not achieve this because of the intervention of others.
Mr Quinn, who prosecutors say owned a yacht worth €100,000, was arrested on September 14, 2016.
Police described him at the time of his arrest as a 30-year-old "drugs and weapons trafficker".