Bradleys serving life for drug dealer murder
Prison bosses are investigating whether two brothers serving life for murder had "active involvement" in an attempt to smuggle the biggest ever seizure of contraband into Mountjoy.
Jason (22) and Dean Bradley (26), of Liscarne Gardens, Clondalkin, are in jail for murdering 36-year-old Neil Reilly in Lucan in 2017.
"An investigation focusing on the brothers' involvement in this seizure is ongoing. They have not been disciplined or arrested yet," a jail source told the Herald.
On Tuesday of last week, gardaí helped the Irish Prison Service seize cocaine with an estimated value of €140,000, tablets believed to be worth up to €20,000 and €5,000 of suspected cannabis herb.
The consignment of up to 10,000 tablets, 30 mobile phones, SIM cards, cocaine, steroids, whiskey and even Fitbits was found in an intelligence-led operation.
It followed a telephone tip-off to Mountjoy Prison from the outside.
Investigators believe most of the contraband was destined for Kinahan cartel inmates in the run-up to Christmas.
The Bradley brothers are not considered members of that organised crime gang.
"A connection between the Bradley brothers and the attempt to smuggle these items into the jail is being looked at," the source said.
"It is not thought that they were the main organisers of it at this stage, but they are in the frame."
The estimated €170,000 worth of seized contraband would be worth at least double that in prison, where prices are inflated as they are all banned items.
Sources said that despite tensions remaining high since last week's seizure, there have been no violent incidents linked to the discovery.
Senior sources said the current focus of the garda investigation is on who on the outside was responsible for trying to get the illegal haul into the jail.
The contraband was found in a van, in two boxes hidden in a pallet that was meant to contain sugar.
The driver was arrested at the scene by gardaí from Mountjoy garda station. He is a Romanian national in his 40s.
He was released without charge, with sources saying "all the indications were that he knew nothing about the contraband".
Instead, it is understood the haul was placed in the van without his knowledge.
The van contained five pallets.
"Investigations have established that about 10 people had enough access, which meant that they could have placed the illegal items in the vehicle and hidden them," a senior source said.
"This is the focus now of gardaí - to try to determine who put the stuff in the vehicle."
The reputable firm that was delivering food to the jail has a warehouse in north Co Dublin.
Much of the garda investigation is centred on whether the contraband was somehow placed in the van there.
It can also be revealed that criminals had used a delivery vehicle from the same unsuspecting firm in a previous botched smuggling attempt when a parcel of drugs was found attached to the undercarriage in 2018.
It was intercepted before it got into Mountjoy.
That seizure had nowhere near the same value as last week's haul, in which some packages even had the initials and nicknames of inmates on them.
One prison source said the operation was being run like a click-and-collect enterprise.
Senior sources could not confirm last night that six of the packages were destined for a Ballyfermot criminal with links to the Kinahan cartel.
This man is serving a lengthy sentence for a feud-related murder plot.
His initials were apparently found on the items.
"If the information proves to be correct, it is a bit of a surprise that the Bradley brothers would get caught up in such a serious crime, but maybe they were used by more serious criminals," a senior source said.
The Bradleys are expected to appeal against their conviction in 2018 for the murder of drug dealer Neil Reilly at Esker Glebe, Lucan, on January 18, 2017.
During their trial, it emerged that Jason Bradley inflicted seven chop wounds with a sharp weapon on Reilly before Dean Bradley drove over him.
The trial heard Jason owed €9,000 to Reilly over a drug debt.
Reilly had broken into the Bradley home armed with a pair of garden shears about a month before he carried out another attack at the Clondalkin property in which he fired two shots, smashing a front window.
He was chased by Jason and others before Jason beat him with a sharp weapon.
Reilly suffered skull and brain injuries and seven chop wounds, all of which were described as severe and potentially fatal.
As Reilly lay on the road, Dean Bradley's BMW arrived and drove over him, crushing his pelvis and causing injuries that alone could have killed him.
Witnesses said the car drove back and forth over the body.