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Gardaí issue threat warnings in Limerick as they probe gang link to road crash death

Gardaí have been told to respond with haste to any calls to the homes of those who have been warned of the threats.

LAST UPDATE | 13 Sep 2022

GARDAÍ ARE INVESTIGATING if the death of a man in County Clare in a road collision on Friday night is linked to a reignited feud in Limerick city. 

Multiple sources have said that a number of people were issued with Garda Information Message (GIM) forms in the past 24 hours in Limerick warning them that they are subject to a threat to their lives. 

Gardaí across the county have also been told to respond with haste to any calls to addresses linked to the people who have been warned.

Tyler Kelly died in an incident in Parteen, County Clare on Friday night. Investigators believe he was travelling in a car with a number of people with connections to The Island area of the city.

It is thought his car may have come into contact with another vehicle associated with known criminals with connections to the Northern suburbs of Limerick city near Parteen.

An innocent woman driving in the area was struck in the collision – she was not connected to any of the violence and was just driving home.   

Gardaí are appealing for witnesses to the collision. They did not respond to specific queries from The Journal regarding the claims of feuding. 

Fear of return to past

Maurice Quinlivan, a Sinn Féin TD in the city, called for calm and asked gardaí to increase their presence in the various areas.

“I would call for a strong garda response in the areas – the gardaí have been around but they need to step up some of their visibility in the area. People need to feel secure in their homes.  

“There is an ongoing operation in one of the areas – that needs to be increased and the people who are selling drugs need to be dealt with,” he said. 

Although the latest outbreak of violence is understood not to involve the exact structure of the deadly feud of the early 2000s, there are fears of an escalation as it does involve people associated with similar groups. 

The much-publicised feud between McCarthy/Dundon and Keane/Collopy drug gangs resulted in the deaths of at least 20 people in the early 2000s.

Huge amounts of garda resources were sent to the city after the deaths of innocent men Roy Collins and Shane Geoghegan. They were killed by gunmen associated with the McCarthy/Dundon gang. 

Collins was shot because his family had given evidence against the Dundon group and Geoghegan was shot in a case of mistaken identity as the Dundon gang sought to shoot a man associated with the Keane/Collopy gang. 

That gang feud was based around a number of areas – with the Dundon/McCarthy faction based in Moyross and Ballinacurra Weston, while the Keane/Collopy gang was based in an area known as the Island with most members living in St Mary’s Park.  

One of the key players in the most recent violence is a man who was closely associated with violence in the past – he has issued threats on social media towards other people perceived to be in a separate gang. 

The Journal has learned that the death in Parteen follows a number of other minor incidents following an alleged assault at a football match in the city in recent days. 

It is understood that the original assault involved two men – one aligned with a group based in the St Mary’s Park area of the city and the other from Moyross. 

There is understood to have been another incident involving cars near St Mary’s Park but gardaí have said there is no record of it reported to them.

Sources have said that tensions are constantly simmering in the background but the recent outbreak is being taken more seriously by gardaí.

A source said that gardaí are monitoring the movements of known criminals and armed units have been given specific instructions in how to deal with the groups. 

In a statement a garda spokesperson said: “An Garda Síochána does not comment on ongoing investigations.

“An Garda Síochána does not comment on, confirm or deny any matters relating to security of any individual(s).”