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Family of 'Fat'Andy too afraid to sort funeral

The family of Ireland's latest gangland murder victim said that they do not want any revenge for his savage slaying as it has emerged that they are being threatened by gangsters.

A niece of 'Fat' Andy Connors told the Herald: "We do not want any revenge for what happened - none of our family wants revenge.

"Andy has six brothers and none of them wants anything only peace now, the family will not be avenging Andy's death. The family is in a lot of fear now."

The body of the notorious Traveller criminal was released to his family on Monday night but a date for his funeral has yet to be finalised.

Policing

However, 'Fat' Andy's funeral will take place in Gorey, Co Wexford, and gardai in the town have formulated a special policing plan for the event due to take place in the coming days.

The Herald has learned that Connors is due to be buried in a gold-lined coffin worth €28,000, which is to be imported from England.

He will be buried at St Michael's Cemetery in Gorey and his grave has already been prepared there. But last night senior sources could only confirm that the funeral will not take place today.

In the meantime, the body of father-of-six Connors is lying in an open coffin in the property in Saggart, west Dublin, where he was shot dead in front of some of his children last Tuesday night.

A large number of the burglary gang boss's relations have since travelled to England.

His niece, who asked not to be named, said that she had been authorised to contact the Herald by her family after death threats had been made to other members of the Connors in the Tallaght area over the past week. She said that the threats happened in phone calls and have not been reported to gardai because "the family will not talk to gardai".

"We don't want to co-operate with gardai, we just want to live in peace. Family members have got calls threatening them to leave their homes," the woman said.

She also claimed that threats to the lives of some of 'Fat' Andy's family members are the reason why a date for the 45-year-old murder victim's funeral has not been finalised.

'Fat' Andy's extended Traveller gang who have over 200 members are the chief targets of the garda's Operation Fiacla. His murder is not expected to end their organised nationwide crime spree.

The massive scale of their activities can be seen by the fact that they are the biggest and most prolific gang involved in the massive burglary spree in Ireland which netted over €11m worth of cash and possessions from homes in the last six months of 2013.

stolen

The handgun used to murder the Traveller gang boss was found by gardai in a burnt out white Opel Insignia in a yard off the Blessington Road last week. This car had been stolen in Carlow on July 14.

Gardai believe that a black Kia Sportage stolen in Kilkenny on July 16, which was found in Mount Argus, Dublin, was also used in the murder.

Gardai are probing whether 'Fat' Andy was killed by the INLA after he refused to pay up to their extortion demands.

They are also probing a dispute he was involved in with a high profile south-Dublin businessman. Sources said that other theories are being examined include a violent incident that Connors was involved in less than a fortnight before his murder.

kfoy@herald.ie


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