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Sun shines on 'Fat' Freddie as he gets bail

GANG Boss 'Fat' Freddie Thompson was today enjoying the Mediterranean sunshine after being freed on bail from a Spanish court.

The 30-year-old criminal was brought by armed officers to a courthouse in Estepona where he faced charges of drug trafficking, weapons smuggling, money laundering and unlawful assembly.

Thompson was extradited to Spain last Friday at the request of officers probing his links to Irish gang boss Christy Kinahan's €1bn crime empire.

Sources believe that his decision to agree to extradition to Spain to face the charges is a "tactical manoeuvre" to allow him to continue his life of crime.

However the Crumlin gangster was spared more prison time after agreeing to bail conditions and was today soaking up the Spanish sunshine.

Thompson was ordered to hand over his passport and to sign on at the court twice per month until his case is heard -- a requirement that is likely to bring him into contact with alleged associates John Cunningham and Kinahan's sons Daniel and Christopher.

And it is likely Thompson will be joined in Marbella by girlfriend Vicky Dempsey (30) and his young son.

He is believed to be staying in a plush villa along with his cousin, Liam Byrne (32).

Spanish officers are expected to keep close tabs on the gangland boss over fears he may be targeted by enemies.

If convicted, Thompson is facing nine years in prison.

Thompson spent 13 days on the D2 wing of Cloverhill prison before being flown to Spain. He is thought to have then spent the weekend in prisons in Madrid and Alhaurin de la Torre -- home to killers Dermot McArdle and Eric 'Lucky' Wilson.

Sources at Cloverhill have revealed that Thompson indicated being on bail in Spain would be a more attractive option than an Irish jail.

"He was always polite and caused no trouble whatsoever," according to a senior officer.

While awaiting his extradition hearing, Thompson received three visitors.

One of these visitors is believed to be a close associate of fugitive Eugene Cullen, who is being sought for questioning by detectives in relation to a robbery in Dundrum and a fatal shooting in 2009.