Belfast Telegraph

Suspect in fatal boxing shooting 'is NI dissident'

By Allan Preston

An investigation into two gangland shootings in Dublin has examined a connection with a Northern Ireland dissident.

The BBC Spotlight programme also communicated with one of the families thought to be involved in the killings.

Reporter Jennifer O'Leary said that two criminal families in Dublin, the Kinahans and the Hutches, were now in "all-out war".

At a boxing weigh-in at the Regency Hotel in Dublin in January, 34-year-old David Byrne was shot dead when six men dressed as gardai entered the building and opened fire.

It is believed the murder was ordered by the Hutch family, with the intended target thought to be Daniel Kinahan, who allegedly runs a criminal enterprise from the Costa del Sol in Spain.

Days later Eddie Hutch, a brother of a senior member of the Hutch gang, was murdered. The Continuity IRA was suspected of being involved but denied any role.

Two armed men were photographed by a Sunday World reporter leaving the hotel - one dressed as a woman, the other wearing a peaked cap.

Death threats were made to Sunday World journalists because of the picture, a crucial piece of evidence.

The man in the cap has not been named but he is believed to be from here and is said to have links to paramilitaries.

Sunday World journalist Nicola Tallent said: "My understanding is that he is a man from the north of Ireland who has paramilitary history. He's been involved in a number of paramilitary groups and has been expelled from some of them. Clearly he's a hitman for hire."

Spotlight said a picture they found of an individual in Co Tyrone appears to be the same man. The programme added he was a dissident republican who in the past has been charged with firearms offences and attacks on drug dealers and who has now fled to England.

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