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Dublin: 7 °C Thursday 21 November, 2019
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Three potential shooters being investigated over murder of 'serial killer' Mark Desmond

The career criminal was executed on Friday.

Image: Eamonn Farrell

GARDAÍ HAVE DRAWN up a list of potential shooters they believe could be behind the execution of suspected ‘serial killer’ Mark Desmond.

Desmond was murdered in a Lucan park on Friday evening after being chased a short distance.

He was shot at least three times with a revolver handgun – once to the head, once to the body and at least one shot into his groin. The precision of the execution has decreased the number of potential suspects who are capable of carrying out that type of murder.

The body of the 41-year-old was found with gunshot wounds at Griffeen Valley Park in Lucan, west Dublin shortly after 8pm on Friday.

Suspects

A blue Mazda car was found burned out close to the scene. A gun was found inside the car on Haydens Lane.

Security sources have told TheJournal.ie that while Desmond’s murder came as no surprise, there are a number of warring factions who would have had a motive to kill him.

3/12/2016. Gangland Murder In A Public Park. Membe Source: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

His links to dissident republicans and the drug trade in west Dublin has been well established. He presided over his own mini cocaine and heroin empire and was known to criminals and gardaí for his brutish nature and aggression.

Whether he fell foul of some lingering elements within the republican movement is a distinct possibility but sources said they have not ruled out a personal motive for the crime.

Notorious

Desmond had recently set up his drug business in Sligo with the help of two brothers from the area who are notorious for their aggressive and violent loan-shark activities. There had been threats to his life in recent months. However, this would have been business as usual for Desmond, who served eight years in prison for firearms offences.

He was also charged with the canal murders of Patrick Murray, 19, and Darren Carey, 20, in 1999. However, these charges were dropped days before he was due to go on trial.

The two men were shot before being dumped into the Royal Canal.

Gardaí are investigating whether Desmond’s murder could be payback for killing the two young men. While he was not convicted of any murders, sources believe Desmond was behind at least four killings and the rape of a child.

PATRICK MURRAY MURDERS CRIME SCENES VIOLENCE IN IRELAND Gardaí examine murder scene of Patrick Murray and Darren Carey whose bodies were dumped into the Grand Canal in Kildare after being shot in 1999. Source: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Desmond was known for his proclivity for escorts, both male and female, and had been a person of interest in the rape of a man at the turn of the millennium. He was also accused of raping a male escort in the UK.

Desmond survived previous attempts on his life including a drive-by shooting in July 2006, an attack he believed was orchestrated by Anthony Cannon, who himself was executed in 2009.

Gardaí have renewed their appeal for witnesses and are interested in hearing from anyone who may have seen anything unusual or suspicious in or around Griffeen Park between 7pm and 9pm on Friday night.

They are particularly interested in hearing from anyone who may have been using the park at the time such as walkers or joggers.

In addition, anyone who may have seen anything unusual or suspicious in or around Hayden’s Lane in Lucan where a burned out car was found is asked to contact them at Lucan garda station 01 666 7300, the garda confidential telephone line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station.

Read: ‘Daddy bit Mummy’s face – I was scared’: Report gives voice to kids in abusive homes >

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