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Tuesday 15 October 2019

Dublin gang boss arrested in prison and quizzed over feud murder of Kane McCormack

Kane McCormack was found dead in December 2017
Kane McCormack was found dead in December 2017

Robin Schiller and Elaine Keogh

A violent Dublin gang boss is being quizzed by detectives on suspicion of involvement in the feud murder of Kane McCormack.

The dangerous criminal, who was once a member of the infamous Westies gang, was taken from his cell in Mountjoy Prison yesterday morning and arrested by gardaí.

He is suspected of having a "significant" role in the McCormack murder and was one of the last people to be seen with the murder victim.

In the immediate aftermath of McCormack's remains being found, members of the Emergency Response Unit (ERU) raided his Dublin home as part of the investigation.

Kane McCormack (24) was shot three times along the Co Meath/Co Kildare border and his body was found on December 2, 2017.

Gardaí are treating his killing as being linked to the Hutch/Kinahan feud which has claimed up to 19 lives. McCormack's father, Noel 'Duck Egg' Kirwan, was killed as part of the same dispute when he was shot the previous December outside his Ronanstown home.

The criminal currently being quizzed over McCormack's murder, who is aged in his 40s, is also suspected of involvement in other killings and has connections to the Kinahan cartel.

This includes the gun murder of Lithuanian crime boss Gintaras Zelvys in 2013 and he was arrested in connection with that investigation. He has also survived at least one attempt on his life in recent years which was carried out by his former associates in the Westies gang.

Detectives based at Ashbourne garda station yesterday arrested him at Mountjoy Prison, where the criminal is jailed for offences not linked to the feud.

A Garda spokeswoman said: "Gardaí investigating the murder of Kane McCormack have arrested a male in his 40s this morning in relation to the investigation.

"The male was arrested in the Dublin area and is currently being detained under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984 at Ashbourne garda station.

"This is the second arrest in relation to this investigation."

While the gang boss arrested yesterday is suspected of a primary role in the murder, gardaí believe it was a 38-year-old Finglas criminal who fired the fatal shots.

A prominent theory is that McCormack was targeted because, in the wake of his father's murder, he was heard frequently making threats of revenge against the Kinahan mob.

McCormack, also known as Kane Kirwan, had been formally warned by gardaí that his life was in danger, acting on information that the Kinahan cartel would strike over fears he could seek revenge for his father's killing.

It later emerged that there was a €40,000 bounty on McCormack's head, which was offered up when the cartel became aware of his threats.

When he failed to return to his west Dublin home in the early of hours of December 2, there were major concerns about his safety.

This led to a tense situation at the chief suspect's house when a close female associate of the then missing man arrived at the property and made inquires about McCormack's whereabouts, only to be instructed to leave by a woman in the property.

Irish Independent

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