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Sunday 17 December 2017

Gardai enhance patrols on city streets in wake of latest gangland killings - Garda Commissioner

Adam Cullen

Adam Cullen

Garda Commissioner Noirin O Sullivan has said gardai are liaising with Spanish police as part of their investigations into Dublin's bitter gangland feud.

The deadly rivalry between members of the Hutch family and the Kinahan drugs cartel spilled onto the streets again last night with the murder of Eddie Hutch Snr.

Speaking at a press conference at Garda Headquarters in Phoenix Park the commissioner said there would be an “organisation-wide response” to the violence and sought to reassure the public that as well as an active investigation, preventative measures to quell the violence were also being implemented.

However, when questioned on why there were no Gardai present at the Regency Hotel in Dublin on Friday where David Byrne was shot dead after six gun men stormed the venues she said there was no viable intelligence to suggest an attack an attack was imminent.

She said officers were deployed on factors including "intelligence and risk assessment" adding that as far as Gardai were concerned the event last Friday was merely a sporting occasion.

When asked why Gardai were unable to prevent last night's murder on Poplar row despite the fact of rolling checkpoints across the city she said often when criminals show such intent to commit a crime it can be very difficult to stop them.

Garda assistant commissioner Jack Nolan says the force are keeping an "open mind" for the motive of Eddie Hutch's murder.

He would not state if the any member of the Hutch family was advised if their life was in danger prior to the shooting of Eddie Hutch.

“That’s not an avenue I’d like to go down at this point in time,” Mr Nolan said at a press conference this evening.

He added that gardaí “had no specific intelligence” that Eddie Hutch was at risk.

Mr Nolan reveals that gardaí believe the four gunmen responsible for the murder abandoned the silver BMW and fled in either a dark Isuzu jeep or a Land Cruiser.

Mr Nolan said that while the BMW was not stolen, he was keen to speak to anybody who seen the car bearing registration plate 06-G-8965.

He also said that gardaí are interested in a black Peugeot car which was seen in the area at the time of the shooting.

The commissioner also confirmed that it appears handguns were used to kill Hutch and that two of the masked gunmen fired shots.

Commissioner Nolan said that he believes the “significant garda presence” spooked the gunmen and that’s why the getaway car was abandoned.

The detectives leading the case added they are “conscious” of retaliation and that there is a “focus in particular areas” in Dublin which has been managed with “enhance patrolling”.

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