TWO gunmen responsible for six murders tried to murder King Ratt's love rival.
The Herald has learned that the two-man hit team, who tried to kill the man last Tuesday night, have carried out half-a- dozen killings between them, including the sordid kidnap, rape and murder of Roma girl Mariora Rostas.
The men, aged 34 and 31, have agreed to take a €20,000 contract to target the new boyfriend of Natasha McEnroe, a 24-year-old man.
They are the chief suspects for the attempted murder of the man at Clanbrassil Street last Tuesday night. Both men are being hunted by gardai.
The love rival miraculously escaped after the two-man hit team drew alongside their target and fired two shots.
The target was sitting in a car on Charlemont Street, close to St Stephen's Green, when shots were aimed at him from a passing vehicle.
One bullet hit the door while another shattered the window of the car -- but McEnroe's boyfriend was not hit. The gunmen's car was later found crashed near Peters' Place. The occupants had fled and there was no sign of the weapon.
The chief suspects in the shooting are two gun-for-hires believed to have been responsible for at least six murders between them. One of the suspects is a 31-year-old gangster who is a known associate of slain gangster Eamon 'The Don' Dunne.
He is also a suspect in the kidnap and rape of Mariora Rostas in November 2008. Detectives believe that the 18-year-old was abducted, raped and murdered within 24 hours of vanishing in Dublin after an encounter with a well-known criminal. Her body has never been found.
In the hours before her suspected murder, the teenager made a last, frantic phone call to her older brother in Romania.
Detectives believe she somehow made this call from a mobile phone in the house where she was being held captive in the south inner city.
The suspected killer is also a close associate of Eric 'Lucky' Wilson, who is currently on trial for murder in Spain.
The second suspect in Tuesday night's shooting is a gangland hitman believed to be responsible for five contract killings.
The 34-year-old contract killer from Ballyfermot is believed to have carried out the execution of Sean McMahon (35) in November 2007.
He was killed as he slept in his house in Donomore Avenue, Tallaght.
Mr McMahon was known to gardai as an armed robber and associate of car dealer Brian Downes(40), who was shot dead along with Edward Ward (24) in Walkinstown, Dublin, in October 2007.
The contract killer is believed to have been responsible for the double murder of Downes, who was known for being a gangland 'fixer' and the target for the shooting, while Edward Ward was an innocent victim in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Career criminal and father-of-three John Berney (29) is also believed to have fallen foul of the gunman. Berney, a suspect in two gangland murders, was shot in the head and back by a masked gunman who burst into the bedroom of his west Dublin home in March 2008.
The attack on Natasha McEnroe's new beau was the second attempt on his life this year.
Gunmen broke into the Ranelagh home he shares with McEnroe in January but he ran for his life on that occasion. In that, the man jumped from a window of his house as a gunman climbed the stairs, while another gunman held Natasha McEnroe at gunpoint.
Gardai had warned them on December 31 that their lives were in danger and they should take added precautions.
The couple's home in Rane-lagh has been under 24-hour garda protection since the incident in January.
Jailed gangster King Ratt split with McEnroe last November.