Two held over fatal shooting of gang member
GARDAI investigating the murder of Stephen Hanaphy (20) last Friday were last night quizzing two men on suspicion of murder.
The men, aged 55 and 21, were arrested at Dundalk garda station at 3.30pm yesterday and can be held for questioning for up to a week.
The 20-year-old victim, who was from Cromcastle Court, Coolock, Dublin, collapsed and died after being shot outside a house in the Sliabh Breagh estate in Ardee, Co Louth.
Gardai believe Stephen -- who was also known by the surname Lyndon -- was one of a four-man gang from Dublin who went there to take part in an attack on two men who lived in the house.
However, the Dublin gang was met with gunfire and the men in the house left before the body was found some 300 metres away.
Yesterday gardai said they believed that what some people thought were fireworks exploding at the time of the incident on Friday night may have been the sound of a gun being fired.
They have renewed their appeal to the public for information about the shooting and asked for a taxi driver who took one of accomplices of the deceased back to Dublin after the shooting to contact them.
It's not known whether the gang intended to recover a debt or if they were going to assault the men living in the house.
Gardai believe that two of the gang broke into the house through a rear window and opened the front door for the other two.
However, as the four were in the hall they were met with gunfire. They fled the scene and abandoned a Renault Laguna car they had travelled in outside the house.
The shooting took place at 11pm on Friday -- but Mr Hanaphy's body was not found until some five hours later.
Gardai said that the place where his body was found, underneath a tree a few hundred metres from the house, was "very dark that night", and "they just left him there, they did not care about him and were afraid."
A baseball bat found beside the body is believed to have been brought to the house, along with iron bars.
Yesterday Garda Superintendent Ray Brennan, Ardee, asked that people who may have heard the fireworks/gunfire "to please tell us about it. What might seem insignificant to somebody could be significant to us."
The incident room in Ardee garda station can be contacted on 041-6871139.