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Gardaí examine Gatley's car after the shooting.
full recovery

Gangland victim James Gately to make full recovery despite being shot through the neck

He was shot four times as he sat in a car at a Topaz garage in north Dublin last week.

JAMES ‘MAGO’ GATELY, who was shot four times in the latest Kinahan-Hutch shooting over a week ago, is to make a full recovery but is still considered the cartel’s main target. 

Gately was shot as he sat in his car at a petrol station in Clonshaugh, north Dublin, last week. One bullet went through his neck, missing his spinal column by millimetres. It lodged near his jaw. Another shot went through his shoulder. The other two hit his body but he was wearing a bulletproof vest.

Despite the murder attempt at such close range, Gately, who is being guarded by armed officers, is expected to leave hospital in the coming weeks.

Gardaí are treating Gately as a ‘Tier 1′ target – meaning that officers believe another attempt on his life is imminent. In recent weeks, he had tried to disguise himself. He had started to grow facial hair, had changed his hairstyle and would change cars every other week. He has lived between Dublin and Belfast as part of his efforts to avoid the attentions of the Kinahan gang.

The man who shot Gately is understood to have come from dissident republican circles, most likely a splinter group of the INLA. Gardaí believe that the attempted murderer has contacts on both sides of the border

According to intelligence, the man has told senior cartel members that he will continue to track Gately.

Undercover officers will be watching Gately’s movements on his release from hospital. Gardaí are continuing to mount patrols around the homes of his relatives, fearing they could also be targeted.

Gately has failed to cooperate with officers since the shooting despite he and his family being told that there is still a considerable threat to his life. He is expected to sign himself out of hospital – without warning – so as to not tip off would-be killers. He has been advised by friends to leave the country and not to come back.

SHOOTING SCENE 758A9868_90511186 Gardaí comb for evidence at the scene of the shooting. Eamonn Farrell / Eamonn Farrell / /

As part of their probe into his shooting, officers are examining how information on Gately’s whereabouts was obtained by the gunman.

Gately, who is known for his taste in expensive cars and motorbikes, was travelling in a wine-coloured, old-model Ford Mondeo – which were previously used for unmarked garda cars before the introduction of the newer Hyundai i40s.

Last week’s shooting ends what was an undeclared break in the violence which has seen 11 people killed in less than two years. This peace was not entirely the decision of the gangs but due to elite gardaí apprehending killers and seizing caches of guns and ammunition.

History of the feud

Gary Hutch’s murder in Spain in late 2015 is seen as the start of the Kinahan-Hutch feud. The Regency Hotel attack occurred four months later after peace talks between the two gangs failed.

The resumption of the violence last week was somewhat expected. Tensions are rising in underworld circles, not least within the upper echelons of the Kinahan cartel, where Daniel Kinahan, the de facto leader of the gang, has been named by an informer as part of a gangland murder plot.

The thinking amongst security sources at this time is that more attempted murders are on the way. All those who could potentially testify against Daniel Kinahan are now not just a target but a priority for an attack – be they in prison or outside.

James Gately rejected garda protection just weeks before he was shot four times >

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