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Saturday 18 November 2017

Gardai seek to arrest 'Fat' Freddie

Dublin criminal living in Spain wanted for questioning over vicious assaults in inner-city pub

Jim Cusack

Jim Cusack

Gardai are seeking to arrest Dublin criminal 'Fat' Freddie Thompson, who is living in Spain, over a serious assault on two men in a Dublin pub earlier this year.

Dublin detectives travelled to Wexford last weekend after receiving information that he had returned to Ireland and was staying in a caravan in Curracloe. However, they found no sign of him.

Thompson, 32, has been arrested dozens of times in relation to attempted murder, serious assaults and other offences, but has never been convicted of any serious offence. Repeatedly, witnesses in violent incidents in which Thompson has been suspected refused to make statements or later withdrew them.

Thompson was arrested in March 2002 after a woman named him as one of three men who shot Brian Rattigan several times as he slept in his mother's home in Drimnagh. Rattigan is now serving life for murder. The woman who named Thompson withdrew her statement.

The shooting of Rattigan, whose brother, Joey, was later murdered, was in the early stages of the Crumlin-Drimnagh feud – the bloodiest involving organised crime in the history of the State – that resulted in 18 deaths between 2001 and last year.

The Rattigan-led gang was substantially defeated with the murder last September of Thomas Eglington, 27, who was shot dead in front of his partner's two children at a rented house in Portarlington, Co Laois.

On the same day, another Rattigan associate, Declan O'Reilly, 32, was shot dead as he walked along the South Circular Road in Dublin with his 11-year-old son.

The feuding in Dublin has decreased significantly in the past year, and many of the gang members who are not in prison have moved out of the city or, like Thompson, gone abroad.

Thompson has been living in Spain since being extradited there in October 2011. Spanish police were eager to question him in relation to three charges of possession of drugs, weapons trafficking and unlawful assembly.

His extradition was sought as part of the Spanish police investigation into the drugs trafficking empire built up by Irish criminal Christy Kinahan, who gardai believe was the main supplier of drugs to Ireland before his arrest as part of a pan-European operation in May 2010.

However, Thompson was quickly released from custody and no longer appears to be under investigation in Spain, prompting gardai to believe he has entered into some form of arrangement with the authorities there.

In his absence, former associates are believed to have taken over drug supplying in south inner city Dublin where Thompson grew up and lived – in Maryland – before leaving Ireland.

The assault he is sought in connection with happened in a south inner city pub on January 7 when up to 15 men were involved in a vicious brawl in which broken glasses and bottles were used.

Two men suffered serious injuries.

Irish Independent

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