A South East Antrim UDA drug dealer arrested in connection with the murder of Glenn Quinn threw a party to celebrate being freed from police bail.
For the past six months Colin Simms has been the focus for detectives investigating the horrific Carrickfergus gang killing.
But last Monday he was informed his bail conditions were being removed because there is no evidence linking him to Glenn's death. Two other close associates, a male and female, received the same news.
UDA sources say that Simms, a convicted killer driver and drug dealer, celebrated by throwing a party.
Twenty-four hours later family and friends of Glenn, who have been demanding justice for him, were warned by police that their lives are under threat.
Referencing both incidents, the murder victim's sister Leslie Murphy, said: "The day after certain individuals were reportedly partying and celebrating, my family, along with a number of people in Carrick, received death threats."
Simms, who wants Sunday Life to arrange a lie detector test to prove he had nothing to do with Glenn's killing, told this newspaper: "I'm willing to do a lie detector test and also a drug test before it, so there cannot be any way anyone can twist or distort the truth."
The UDA enforcer, who was previously jailed for killing Carrick woman Stephanie Horner in a car crash while high on drugs, said he was "sick" of the "absolute lies" spread about him.
While adopting a polite tone in his correspondence with this newspaper, the 41-year-old, who was also given a suspended jail sentence for having £350,000 of cannabis with intent to supply, was much more bullish in social media posts.
In one rant he said: "So, for all the rats, the touts, and every other snake b*****d who doubted us, use (sic) can take your apologies and whatever else you want and go f**k yourselves."
Although Simms is no longer on police bail in connection with Glenn's murder, the investigation remains active.
PSNI sources say they are certain of the identity of the killers, who were laying in wait in a communal hallway outside Glenn's flat in the loyalist Woodburn estate.
After he was beaten the 48-year-old managed to phone a family member and a friend and tell them the names of his UDA attackers.
The failure to bring charges against anyone is understood to be down to the PSNI's inability to link potential DNA evidence found at the scene to the main suspects.
Glenn had also accused Simms of assaulting him outside his flat five days before he was murdered. This was another reason for the UDA drug dealer's arrest in January. Six months later, Simms, whose most recent conviction was for attacking a house during a loyalist feud, insists he is now completely in the clear.
"I've been informed that me and the other people have been released unconditionally," he said.
The South East Antrim UDA has told the Quinn family that the murder was not sanctioned and his killers have no support from the terror gang.
But this statement is at odds with that of Detective Chief Inspector Darren McCartney, who is heading the probe.
In a Sunday Life interview last month, he said Glenn was fatally attacked by "UDA drug dealers" and that the same individuals have "been involved in attacks on people before".
The renewed police focus on the South East Antrim UDA following the January killing has heaped huge pressure on the organisation, which has around 2,000 members and is considered among Northern Ireland's biggest drugs gangs.
Dozens of police raids disrupting its crime rackets have taken place since then with loyalist veterans pointing the finger of blame at Simms and accusing him of thrusting them into the spotlight.
Secretive South East Antrim UDA leader Gary Fisher, who sanctioned Simms being kneecapped last year for stealing drug money, is known to be furious with him.
Sources say this is why the thug is so desperate to disassociate himself from the Glenn Quinn murder - in case he is 'punished' again.
Popular barman Glenn was the seventh Protestant in Carrickfergus to be killed by the South East Antrim UDA in the past two decades over a personal dispute.
No one has been convicted of any of involvement in the deaths of Simon Tang, Tommy Hollran, Charlie Strain, Hugh Cameron, Mark Gourley and Geordie Gilmore.