Thursday 26 April 2018

Hutch associate escapes a second attempt on his life in house attack

Attack: Bullet holes in a house window in Cherry Orchard
Attack: Bullet holes in a house window in Cherry Orchard
Jim Cusack

Jim Cusack

The intended victim of the latest attempted feud murder in Dublin early yesterday escaped another attempt on his life last month.

Keith Murtagh (32) was slightly injured when shots were fired through the living room window of a house in Cherry Orchard Court in south Dublin at 1.40am yesterday. A woman with him was also slightly injured, gardai said.

The couple received treatment in St James's Hospital, but discharged themselves shortly afterwards. It is understood that neither suffered gunshot injuries but were hit by shattered glass.

Gardai yesterday confirmed that shots had been fired at the house and they were investigating, but had few other details. There was no indication how the attacker or attackers made their getaway.

Murtagh was the intended target of another assassination attempt on April 14 when innocent by-stander Martin O'Rourke (26) was shot dead on Sheriff Street in the north inner city. Murtagh was said by local people to have been close by at the time and was uninjured. So far, six murders have taken place in the feud.

It is believed Murtagh has been targeted due to his close links to members of the Hutch family.

He was released from jail at the start of the year after serving seven years for his part in an armed robbery in Lucan, Co Dublin, in May 2009.

Murtagh was sentenced along with Derek 'Del Boy' Hutch, a nephew of Gerry Hutch, in relation to an attempted robbery of a cash-in-transit van at a supermarket in Lucan.

During the robbery another gang member, Garrett Molloy (27), also from north inner Dublin, who was brandishing a firearm, was shot and killed by gardai.

Garda sources in Dublin say there is no end in sight to the feud which was sparked by the Kinahan gang's murder of Gary Hutch (34) in southern Spain last September. This was followed by an attempt to murder Derek Hutch in prison. He was stabbed repeatedly with a home-made knife and only saved by the intervention of prison staff in Mountjoy Prison.

Keith Murtagh has been one of the top targets of the Kinahan gang since the Regency Hotel attack on February 5 in which David Byrne (32), a senior Kinahan gang member, was shot dead.

There is no suggestion that Murtagh was in any way involved in the attack, but it is believed he is being targeted because of his close links to Derek Hutch and other members of the northside gang.

According to Garda sources, the Kinahan gang's representatives, based mainly in the southside of inner city Dublin, are determined to destroy the Hutch gang and its associates.

So far, the Kinahan gang have killed five people in the feud, including Gerry Hutch's brother, Eddie (59), a taxi driver who was not involved in organised crime.

Sunday Independent

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