Saturday 20 January 2018

'You will not win'–Justice Minister's message to Kinahan and Hutch gangs on Regency anniversary

Justice Minister Francis Fitzgerald says there will be heightened security on the anniversary of the Regency Hotel shooting Photo: Steve Humphreys
Justice Minister Francis Fitzgerald says there will be heightened security on the anniversary of the Regency Hotel shooting Photo: Steve Humphreys
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald has warned the criminals involved in the Kinahan/Hutch feud "you will not win".

The Justice Minister said there is "heightened security" in Dublin this weekend amid fears the gangs may use the anniversary of the Regency Hotel murder to carry out fresh attacks.

It will be a year ago on Sunday since David Byrne was gunned down by men posing as gardaí in the well-known hotel on the outskirts of the capital.

The feud has already claimed 11 lives.

"There is heightened security all of the time. That’s the reality of the way we responded to what happened in the Regency Hotel.

"It was an outrage against the local community, an outrage against every citizen. That’s why we reacted very quickly with resources, with legislation, with a new Armed Response Unit for Dublin, with saturation policing, with a huge amount of overtime," Ms Fitzgerald said today.

Asked if she had a message for the gangster involved, she replied: “We dealt with a similar situation in Limerick. We dealt with it in Crumlin. It took time. It took resources. These people think they are above the law but they are not above the law.

"That’s what’s become clear in recent weeks and I hope they get that message. That’s the message from me as Minister for Justice, it’s the message from the Government and the message from An Garda Siochana."

She said the court decision this week to take properties of former gang boss John Gilligan proved that nobody is above the law.

"It may take time but you will not win," she said.

But Ms Fitzgerald acknowledged that the gangs are unlikely to stop what she called a "cycle of retaliation and revenge", meaning the Government must also be "relentless".

"I want to pay tribute to the work of the guards and we’ve seen in recent weeks how much of their work is coming to fruition but you have to be relentless with criminal gangs who are in a cycle of revenge and retaliation," she said.

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