A female relative of two brothers who were slashed in a gruesome jail attack has revealed that the family is living in fear of gangland thug Jason 'Jay' O'Connor.
Criminal brothers Jason (45) and Gerard Halpin (42), who are from the Corduff area of Blanchardstown, are continuing to recover from their horrific injuries after being attacked by up to seven inmates in Mountjoy Prison on Monday.
It has now emerged that the Halpin brothers, who were formerly members of the 'Westies' gang, are linked to a faction that has been involved in a bitter west Dublin feud with O'Connor.
A female relative told the Herald yesterday that after the jail attack, she has major fears that O'Connor's associates may target innocent family members and "shoot up" the family home in Corduff.
"Jason and Gerard have absolutely nothing to do with 'Jay' O'Connor - in fact, it is him that was targeting the brothers before they were locked up," she said.
"They hate his guts and he hates theirs as well."
Sources revealed last night that prison bosses have not ruled out whether O'Connor, who is linked to many of the capital's most dangerous gangs, was actually behind Monday's savage attack.
The female relative told the Herald that feared criminal O'Connor falsely accused the brothers of being involved in the mistaken identity gun murder of the gangster's pal Keith Walker at Blanchardstown Pigeon Racing Club on June 12, 2015.
Walker was shot dead by cross-dressing machine gun killer Christopher 'Git' McDonald in a gruesome murder in which O'Connor was the intended target.
After the killing, crazed O'Connor (40) reacted with a foul-mouthed tirade to a newspaper reporter.
"I'll tell you a story, there's going to be a f**king war in Blanchardstown - they are f**king dead, stone f**king dead," he said.
It can now be revealed that O'Connor wrongly singled out the Halpin brothers because of their friendship with a dangerous west Dublin duo who are considered O'Connor's biggest gangland rivals.
"Yes they are friends with them [two criminals who can't be named for legal reasons], but they had no involvement in the murder of Keith Walker," the relative said.
"Jay blamed Jason and Gerard for giving information to the killer about what time Keith Walker was in the pigeon club. They did no so such thing and the gardai know that."
The Herald can confirm that the Halpin brothers have never been arrested in relation to the Walker murder.
However, this did not stop O'Connor embarking on a campaign of terror against the brothers, which involved his associates giving Gerard Halpin a severe beating at his Corduff home for which he later required hospital treatment.
Jason Halpin also had a lucky escape when he was attacked and stabbed by associates of O'Connor as he walked his dog in Blanchardstown.
Since both men were jailed for separate offences, it has been suspected that O'Connor has been plotting to get 'revenge' on them, according to their relative.
"Jay O'Connor has been torturing the family, who are living in terror of what will happen next. Everyone knows that Gerard and Jason are complete criminals but that does not mean that everyone else in the family is," the woman said.
Gardai and prison bosses are continuing to probe the attack.
Gerard Halpin was pulled into his cell on the D-wing of Mountjoy Prison on Monday afternoon and attacked by a group of up to seven inmates.
Jason happened to be walking back past the cell from the C3 wing and jumped in to intervene.
He sustained a number of stab wounds to the legs, thigh and back. There are claims the stabbings were inflicted with scalpels and Stanley blades rather than shivs.