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Kinahan crime gang has 'wreaked havoc' on local communities, senior garda says following triple convictions

Today three men were jailed for taking part in a Kinahan cartel plan to kill a Hutch family member.

Assistant Commissioner Special Crime Operations, John O' Driscoll, centre.
Assistant Commissioner Special Crime Operations, John O' Driscoll, centre.
Image: TheJournal.ie

SENIOR GARDA FIGURES have said the Kinahan crime cartel have “wreaked havoc” on communities in Dublin’s North Inner City following the conviction of three men today. 

Gardaí were speaking after three men received sentences totalling 19 years at the Special Criminal Court for taking part in a Kinahan cartel plan to kill a member of the Hutch family in Dublin’s north inner city.

Michael Burns (43) was jailed for nine years whilst Stephen Curtis (32) and Ciaran O’Driscoll (25) were both sentenced to five years in prison.

The three-judge court was previously told that large sums of money were made available to murder people and those involved in the Kinahan cartel were paid €20,000 for “setting people up for a hit”.

In a related sentence hearing last month, Mr Justice Hunt said the court accepted garda evidence that the Kinahan organised crime gang is involved in “execution-type murders” to protect its core activities, which include organised drugs and firearms offences on “an international scale”.

The court further accepted that the crime gang operated “an organised hierarchical structure” with “cells and subcells” to “segregate activities and limit knowledge” among gang members.

The gang also operated on directions from superiors within this hierarchy.

Speaking this afternoon, Assistant Commissioner Special Crime Operations John O’Driscoll said today’s sentences should “act as a deterrent” to anyone who may be thinking about becoming involved in organised crime. 

O’Driscoll said gardaí aim to dismantle the entire Kinahan cartel, adding there is “sufficient evidence” gathered to secure future convictions. 

“Taking out pillars” of the Kinahan cartel, he said, will “ultimately, we believe, bring about the downfall of those who are at the top of the pyramid”.

Asked today about connections to professional boxing and the Kinahan gang, O’Driscoll said that many people who take part in boxing have represented Ireland “with distinction”.

There has been widespread backlash – in Ireland and beyond – after Daniel Kinahan’s involvement in professional boxing was revealed in recent weeks. 

“Obviously amateur boxing is somewhat removed from the professional sport, which maybe has a murky history in some regards,” said O’Driscoll.

“But we would encourage people in the inner city community to rise above the damage that has been inflicted by these people and to continue to participate in that sport that is so important to them.”

“And we hope to help those communities in trying to rid them of the drugs that are peddled by the Kinahan organised crime group,” he added. 

Asked specifically about Daniel Kinahan and his association with professional boxing, O’Driscoll said “we will deal with serious organised crime in the courtroom”.

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“We will leave it to the courts to make judgements on how successful we are or not,” he said.

According to figures released by gardaí today, between March 2015 and June 2020, gardaí seized €182 million in illicit drugs, 122 firearms, 5,000 rounds of ammunition and €14.2 million in cash. 

With reporting from Dominic McGrath

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