Man shot dead in suspected Dublin gangland attack


A man from a well-known criminal family has been shot dead in Dublin in an attack that has all the hallmarks of a gangland incident.

John Wilson (35) was shot at a house on Cloverhill Road, Ballyfermot, west Dublin at about 3pm.

He is from the area and while he has no major criminal convictions, two of his family members are serving life for gangland murders while another is awaiting trial on a murder charge.

John Wilson is the 13th victim of gang-related killings this year.

Gardaí believe the killer tailed him from the Ballyfermot school where he had earlier picked up his children.

The shooting — the third gangland gun attack in a week and the fourth this month — was initially suspected of being linked to a feud with the Real IRA.

Alan Ryan, a leading figure in the group in the city and known for leading an extortion racket targeting drugs gangs, was murdered earlier this month.

Wilson had convictions for drugs and possession of a sawn-off shotgun.

His brother Eric ‘Lucky’ Wilson is serving life in jail in Spain for murder and another brother Keith is in jail in Ireland, for a separate murder.

Wilson himself was a suspect in a shooting at the Players Lounge pub in Fairview, north Dublin, which left three innocent men with serious injuries.

The atmosphere in the Cherry Orchard area was tense for several hours after the killing with up to 100 people near the house as forensic examinations took place.

Sinn Féin's Aengus Ó Snodaigh has condemned the killing.

“Nobody deserves to be shot down in that way in the middle of the day with their kids coming home from school,” he said.

In April last year Wilson was shot in the leg, and gardaí believe that previously a gunman called off a hit when Wilson’s wife opened the door of their home.

Thirteen men have been killed in gang-related murders this year, including two criminals in unrelated shootings in front of their children this week.

Mr Ó Snodaigh said: “There has been a big upsurge in the fact that there’s been three people shot dead this week but there have been wider tensions in the area and in other areas of Dublin between feuding gangs.

“My understanding is some attacks have been thwarted by Garda surveillance. The pity is that gardaí were not able to prevent this attack and the hope is that they will have the resources to prevent other individuals being attacked.”

The shooting follows two gun murders already this week.

Declan O’Reilly (32) was shot dead on the South Circular Road in Crumlin, Dublin, on Monday night. Dubliner Gerard Eglington (27) was shot dead at his home in Portarlington, Co Laois, on Monday morning.

Both men were killed in front of their children.

An incident room has been established at Ballyfermot Garda station. Anyone with information is asked to contact Ballyfermot Garda station 01 6667200, or the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666 111.

Additional reporting: PA