CONVICTED KILLER Derek ‘Del Boy’ Hutch was released from Wheatfield prison amid high security early this morning.
Hutch, a top tier target for the Kinahan cartel’s killers and who was recently given an official warning by gardai that his life is in danger, was surrounded by officers as he made his way from the prison into a rented Go-car driven by an associate.
Unmarked garda cars then moved in convoy ahead of and behind the rented vehicle as Hutch, who was keeping his head down in the car’s rear seat, was driven from the prison.
Sources described the protective layer of security around Hutch as one of the most elaborate ever put together by gardai on the release of any criminal from Wheatfield Prison.
Despite the intense fears of gardai that Hutch will be shot dead, and that his killing would spark a fresh wave of bloodshed in the Hutch Kinahan feud, it’s understood he told gardai he is going back to the capital’s north inner city after release.
A major security plan is now in place for the gangland criminal as the threat level hanging over him is officially classified as “severe.”
‘Del Boy’ was officially warned of an active threat against his life when gardaí visited him in Wheatfield Prison last Friday and offered him detailed security advice.
The threat is from the Kinahan cartel who have already murdered his brother Gary, uncle Eddie, and cousins Gareth and Derek ‘Coakley’ Hutch..
“All the information is that ‘Del Boy’ is not coming out of jail a reformed person and his release is definitely going to lead to an increase in tensions and gardaí have to be ready to deal with that,” a senior source said.
“He is a dangerous and volatile criminal who is more than capable to attempt to seek revenge for all that the Kinahan cartel have done to his family.
“The fact that he has indicated he is moving back home means that extra armed patrols will be deploy in the area especially as the threat on him is severe,” the source explained.
‘Del Boy’s’ release this morning came after at the conclusion of a 16-year sentence he received in 2012 for his role in an armed raid in May 2009 in Lucan, west Dublin, during which his pal Gareth Molloy was shot dead by gardaí.
He has served lengthy concurrent sentences for offences including manslaughter, robbery and firearms offences and has been far from a model prisoner after getting into a number of scrapes behind bars.
‘Del Boy’s’ release comes just a week before another notorious gangland killer walks free from Portlaoise Prison.
Brian Rattigan (41) has indicated he plans to move back to his family home which is in Drimnagh and this means that Crumlin gardaí will also be drawing up a special policing plan.
Unlike Hutch, Rattigan has not been given a GIM form by gardaí warning of an active threat against his life but there are also serious concerns for his safety.
Gardaí are investigating reports that Rattigan may be planning to move to Spain after he attempted to organise a passport for himself for his release.
“Spain may be even far more dangerous for Rattigan than Dublin. He might best advised to stay put,” a senior source said today before dismissing claims by the criminal who has been locked up for over 17 years that he is a “changed man.”
“Gardaí in general would be very sceptical of this,” the source said, adding that Rattigan had “a huge propensity for violence before he got locked up. It’s hard to see that he has changed”.