Pressure mounts on gang leader Fisher to expel out-of-control former commander behind series of clashes
South East Antrim UDA members were involved in a mass pub brawl after the drunken teenage daughter of one of its former ‘commanders’ was thrown off the premises.
The teen complained to her father, who arrived at the Newtownabbey pub with two carloads of loyalist heavies from the Rathcoole estate.
They clashed with other members of the SEA UDA from the Monkstown area, one of whom asked the schoolgirl to leave the bar.
The fight has caused serious tension within the crime gang, with veteran members demanding the youngster’s father is punished.
The same out-of-control thug attacked a UVF member last month, and on the same night, with the help of a relative, battered the teenage son of a Monkstown SEA UDA member.
The organisation’s ‘brigadier’ Gary Fisher is furious with his behaviour as it defies his order for all SEA UDA men to keep low profiles because of intense police and media scrutiny.
“This fella is making Fisher look like a fool. He just goes around doing what he wants, when he wants,” a source in the gang told Sunday Life.
“Fisher has been in the papers nearly every week for the past year, and on most occasions it’s because of this idiot.”
SEA UDA members keen on having a quiet life hoped that when the bully-boy loyalist was stood down from a leadership position last summer, it would curb his antics. He was demoted, abducted and pistol-whipped by the loyalist gang as a warning to behave.
But they say that since then, he has got worse and is continuing to terrorise the Rathcoole estate.
“There was absolutely no need for that fight in the pub — he started it over nothing,” added our source.
“The young girl was told to leave because she is still at school and was drunk. She rang him and he came down here off his head on drugs with two carloads of men shouting that his daughter had been assaulted.
“That’s when it all kicked off with the Monkstown men. There was glasses being thrown and bottles broken.”
Insiders said the row could spell the end for the UDA thug, with Fisher now under huge pressure to expel him from the terror gang.
“The men want him out, they’ve had enough of his bullying ways,” explained the source. “He’s the main reason why the SEA UDA is absolutely hated in Rathcoole. No one can stand him.
“Fisher needs to take action against him soon before the members do it themselves and put him out of the estate.”
The most recent MI5/police intelligence assessment of the SEA UDA, which has 2,000 members, described it as “having access to arms” and being “heavily involved in drugs supply, community coercion, intimidation and other criminality”.
The gang controls 20 miles of territory in loyalist areas stretching from Larne to north Belfast, and also runs rackets in parts of Ballymena and Newtownards.
The SEA UDA is a key target for the Paramilitary Crime Task Force and has been hit hard by recent PSNI drugs raids.
Security experts estimate its crime network brings in more than £2.5m per year, with Fisher and three close associates from the Rathcoole and Ballyduff estates pocketing most of the cash.