Thursday 13 December 2018

Gardaí believe two notorious Dublin criminals 'were paid €20k to shoot latest gangland murder victim'

Victim: Robert Sheridan was shot dead as he answered door
Victim: Robert Sheridan was shot dead as he answered door

Ken Foy

Gardai are investigating whether two notorious north Dublin criminals were paid a €20,000 bounty to shoot the country's latest gangland murder victim.

Father-of-two Robert Sheridan (45) was gunned down when he answered the door of his home in Poppintree Crescent, Ballymun, at 11.15pm on October 5.

While no arrests have been made, detectives have identified two suspects and have been examining thousands of hours of CCTV from across the capital in a bid to nail the killers.

Independent.ie can reveal that officers are investigating if the shooter is the same hitman-for-hire in his 20s who was previously arrested for the feud-related attempted murder of Hutch gang henchman James 'Mago' Gately in May last year.

It can also be revealed that officers are investigating if a Finglas criminal in his 30s who is considered the right-hand man of the Kinahan cartel-aligned drug dealer nicknamed 'Mr Flashy' was the getaway driver for Sheridan's murder.

The revelations come as funeral details for the convicted criminal were announced, with the ceremony due to take place at St Joseph's Church in Ballymun, followed by burial at St Fintan's Cemetery in Sutton.

The investigation has been aided by the seizure of "documents and items" linked to the victim.

The Herald has learnt that Sheridan had been involved in a long-running dispute with a crack cocaine trafficker which began when he allegedly stole drugs from one of the Ballymun hood's street dealers.

This led to a number of tit-for-tat incidents including properties being shot at and Sheridan's associates carrying out a savage assault on a member of the rival faction.

Gardai became aware of the escalating situation in the weeks before Sheridan's murder and issued him with a Garda Information Message (GIM), which officers give someone when there is a credible risk to their life.

The decision to issue the security advice came on the back of a series of attacks on Sheridan, but it did not prevent him being shot dead nearly a fortnight ago.

Sources have revealed that Sheridan's crack cocaine dealing enemies decided to enlist two north city crime figures who are considered the most ruthless thugs operating on the gangland scene.

"The word is that they got paid €10,000 each for this - it was not personal, just business," a source said.

"Their names are cropping up all over the place in underworld and garda circles now."

The suspected getaway driver was heavily involved in the brutal Finglas feud that erupted last year and was jailed for his role in one of the dispute's most infamous incidents.

However, sources say he has nothing like the criminal pedigree of the suspected gunman in his 20s who has become a huge target for gardai after he was suspected of shooting Gately in a botched attack at a service station in Clonshaugh on May 10 last year.

The hitman-for-hire is now based in a south inner city flats complex. He was previously suspected of ordering - from his prison cell - shootings at homes in Ballymun as part of a personal dispute. Last month, the Herald revealed that he had installed a new €5,000 door in his flat in a bid to stop rival gunmen or gardai from bursting in.

The paranoid mobster, who is at the centre of three separate feuds, has also installed security cameras around the property to protect him and his partner.

He is considered a "main and active participant" in Ireland's newest gangland feud after he took sides against Owen Maguire who was shot multiple times in an attack in Drogheda in July that left him paralysed.

It is understood that the thug knew Sheridan personally but had "no problem" taking up a contract on his life.

Sheridan had been targeted several times in the weeks leading up to his death, with 13 bullets being fired into his home and two cars being burned.

Investigators believe two masked men carried out the gun attack at around 11.15pm before fleeing into nearby Poppintree Park.

Sheridan was treated at the scene by paramedics but pronounced dead a short time later.

The victim was known to local gardai for drug offences but was not considered a serious criminal.

In an interview with the Sunday World days before he was killed, Sheridan revealed that he was carrying a dagger for his own safety.

Herald

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