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Dublin: 17°C Wednesday 22 September 2021

Russian gang suspected of assassination attempt on Kinahan leader in Portugal

The incident happened earlier this month.

Spanish police and gardaí have been working together for a number of years.
Spanish police and gardaí have been working together for a number of years.
Image: Garda Press

A SENIOR MEMBER of the Kinahan cartel dodged an assassination attempt in Portugal earlier this month, TheJournal.ie has learned.

The member, who controls the cartel’s money laundering enterprise, was spending time at a property in Portugal and had had an appointment with a contact with whom he has frequent meetings.

A minute after leaving the appointment, three men exited a car looking for him but he had already left.

The target is not involved in the drug trafficking aspect of the cartel. Instead, his role involves the movement and washing of money through a number of fronts and other channels.

He is now back in Spain – a place he has called home since moving there with his ex-wife over 10 years ago.

However, a number of different gangs on the continent have been trying to kill senior members of the cartel in a bid to weaken their hold in southern Spain and Portugal – an area the Kinahans have controlled for over a decade.

It is suspected that a Russian drug trafficking ring was behind the attempt, according to a number of sources.

The assassination attempt has left the target paranoid, according to criminal sources based in both Dublin and Marbella.

He has long since wanted to get out of the business. Moreover, sources have said that he pleaded with Daniel Kinahan to leave him out of future dealings since the death of his young daughter earlier this year.

Russian gangs as well as British traffickers have long been trying to unseat the Kinahans from their Marbella base. The main reason is that the south-eastern tip of Spain is seen as a key location for the importation of drugs from Africa to Spain.

The Kinahans’ rivals now see the cartel’s problems in Ireland and the UK as the perfect time to strike – meaning that Daniel Kinahan and his lieutenants now believe they will be targeted soon.

The family has been trying to stay one step ahead of the gangs which want them killed by moving between a number of homes they have in the south of Spain.

However, since the assassination attempt, it is now suspected that the Kinahans may have to leave the Spanish region which they once controlled.

Gardaí based in Spain are aware of the movement within the cartel and are reporting back to detective units based in the capital.

Last month, TheJournal.ie reported that the cartel’s Dublin operation was on the verge of imploding as paranoia sets in among the drug traffickers.

At least five of the men who are running the drug ring have ordered the murder of associates who once would have been considered close friends.

The men, each of whom has a price on his head ranging from €50,000 to €150,000, are all aware that they are in danger. Gardaí have given each of them Garda Information Messages (GIM) –  a legal requirement to inform people when their lives are at risk.

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