A SUSPECT in the gangland murder of a Lithuanian crimelord lost two fingers in a horrific hatchet attack by slain RIRA terror chief Alan Ryan's gang.
Jason O' Connor (35) from Clonsilla, west Dublin, was released from garda custody at the weekend, along with two of his associates, after being questioned for five days about the murder in a south Dublin business park earlier this month.
Gintaras Zelvys was shot twice in the body with a handgun as he arrived with his wife to open up his 'cash for clothes' business in the Greenogue industrial estate, Rathcoole, west Dublin, on May 1.
Detectives investigating the murder arrested O' Connor and two other Blanchardstown men in a special operation last week.
O'Connor was previously in the headlines when he had his fingers chopped off with an axe in a horrific attack by Real IRA members under the direction of their boss Alan Ryan, who was shot dead last September. O'Connor was tortured at Fairview Park in north Dublin on May 3 last year – just over a year before Zelvys was murdered in the business park.
O'Connor, of Whitechapel Avenue, Clonsilla, had arrived at Dublin's Mater Hospital with two fingers missing on his right hand.
He had also suffered injuries to the back of his head consistent with a beating and torture.
One of the missing fingers was found in Fairview Park that evening and Gardai were alerted. Doctors later sewed the recovered finger back onto O'Connor's hand, but a second was not found.
Despite his injuries, O'Connor refused to identify his attackers, but detectives quickly established that Alan Ryan's mob were responsible.
Senior sources say detectives are now working on the theory that members of Zelvys's East European gang paid Irish criminals to murder the mob boss.
"The investigation is at a very advanced stage. Gardai are very hopeful of charges in it," said a source.
One of the men arrested with O'Connor last week is a career criminal from Blanchardstown.
The 31-year-old is suspected of acting as a getaway driver in the Audi A3 car used in the hit.
The third suspect is a Blanchardstown taxi driver who is suspected of driving the killers after they abandoned the Audi at the Aylmer Housing estate in Newcastle, Co Dublin.