Sunday 21 October 2018

Former Dublin zookeeper turned drug dealer is victim of latest shooting

Cathal McMahon

Cathal McMahon

The victim of today's gangland shooting was a former Dublin zookeeper who turned to a life of crime.

David 'Daithí' Douglas (53) had links to the Hutch crime gang, George 'The Penguin' Mitchell and a Finglas based drug gang.

But while he was quick to get involved with drug gangs he was not so fast when it came to paying debts he owed them.

This came to a head last November when he was shot while walking his dog near his home on Killala Road in Cabra.

Douglas was rushed to hospital where he was treated for serious injuries.

At the time hiis wife Yumei insisted that he was now a law-abiding citizen. She also warned his would-be assassins that they would pay for the attack.

She wrote on Facebook: "You will pay for this. You will  pay for what you done, all of wrong things!

"I know everybody has their history, like my husband David, but he's already paid that, and I know he's trying to change. Trying to help the people when he met them. For me he's a good person, a good husband, a good father."

Douglas had a lengthy history of crimes.

On April 10, 2008, Douglas and three other men were stopped in a taxi as part of a surveillance operation in the Pearse Street area, following a tip-off. A black holdall bag containing 8kg of cocaine, worth €562,000, was recovered by gardaí.

Telephone records between all four men in the three months beforehand were "a web of interconnection between all men", Dublin Circuit Criminal Court later heard.

In December 2011, Judge Tony Hunt sentenced Douglas to 10 years, with five suspended, after he heard that Douglas had a number of serious criminal convictions.

Among them was a conviction for shooting with intent to kill a garda during an armed robbery, for which he received a 12-year sentence at the Special Criminal Court in 1983.

Douglas married his Chinese wife 13 years ago and the pair lived in Cabra with their children, but run the Shoestown shop where he was shot today.

He always claimed to have strong links with the IRA, but it is understood that he was at one point placed under protection from the group as he was accused of being an informant.

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