| 16°C Dublin

New breed of gang psychos are murdering with impunity


Michael Devoy

Michael Devoy

Michael Devoy

A GANGLAND murder is always shocking.

But the killing of Michael Devoy at the weekend is all the more so because of the apparent impunity with which it was arranged and carried out.

The victim was no stranger to the underworld culture that would claim his life.

Devoy (below) was a notorious career criminal with a long list of convictions.

A drug addict, he was suspected of murdering another criminal, Mark Byrne, in 2005, shooting him as he walked free from Mountjoy Prison.

More recently, Devoy was suspected of shooting three innocent women in a botched attempt to kill drug dealer Greg Lynch outside Hanlon's pub on North Circular Road last October.

As a result of that botched hit, associates of Lynch placed a €20,000 contract on Devoy's head, it's reported. They also placed a pipe bomb near his home.


It was inevitable that revenge would follow the pub shooting, but what happened next must have shocked even hardened detectives.

Devoy was released from prison last Friday. Come the following night, his killers were spotted attempting to dump his body into a ditch. Devoy had been a free man for little more than 24 hours before he was shot dead.

His murder shows the brutal speed and apparent impunity with which Dublin's gangland criminals now operate.If a routine garda patrol had not disturbed his killers, it's likely that his body would still be in that ditch.

I am also convinced that the detectives who disturbed the gangsters as they tried to dump Devoy's body had a lucky escape.

I have no doubt that, if cornered, these assassins would have had no problem turning their guns on gardai.

Ruthless killers, like those who murdered Devoy, are the same breed of vicious psychopaths who shot Det Gda Adrian Donohoe in cold blood a year ago this week.

We have reached a stage where organised crime in Ireland is spawning a particular breed of villain, a gangster who appears to operate without any fear of the law, let alone respect for human life.

These psychopaths will murder anyone for a price.

They will also regard anyone who stands in their way, such as Det Gda Donohoe, as collateral damage, and murder them too.

On the same weekend that Devoy was murdered, we read separate reports of a gangland feud affecting one Dublin school.

Gardai have had to attend the schoolyard of the secondary school to protect students, as a drugs feud threatens to spill over into violence on school grounds. There are now concerns that the school may have to close as a result.

Is it surprising? Sadly it's not, at least to those trying to police the frontline. Killing at will, closing down schools, holding neighbourhoods to ransom.

It's a sad stage of affairs – and it cannot be allowed continue.