Second man shot in Dublin dies from his injuries

 

THE GARDA investigation into the shooting dead of a Dublin drug dealer in the city has become a double murder investigation after a second man wounded in the attack died from his injuries yesterday.

James Moloney (26), originally from St Teresa's Gardens, Dublin, died in St James's Hospital. He had been critically ill since being shot in the head in Summerhill in Dublin's north inner city at 8.40pm on Wednesday.

The other man shot, 35-year-old Michael "Roly" Cronin from Ballymun, died in the Mater hospital less than an hour after the gun attack. Both victims had gone to meet a criminal associate when the attack took place.

The victims were sitting in the front seats of their black Volvo S40 sports car on Langrishe Place, off Summerhill, when a man in the back of the vehicle opened fire.

Cronin was shot once in the back of the head, while Moloney was shot at least twice in the back of the head. The gunman then got out of the car and ran from the scene.

The vehicle with the two wounded men inside rolled out on to Summerhill and crashed into barriers in the centre of the busy road.

The gunman ran into nearby Gloucester Place and possibly on to Seán McDermott Street. A Magnum 357 revolver was found thrown under a car at Gloucester Diamond.

Gardaí believe it was the murder weapon.

A coat with gloves was also found hanging on railings. Gardaí believe all of the items were discarded by the killer.

Eyewitnesses who saw the killer running from the car have told gardaí the man was not wearing gloves when he ran off. Detectives are hopeful that the killer left fingerprints on the gun that may lead to his capture.

A major drugs and armed robbery gang based in Finglas, where Cronin was living at the time of his killing, are the chief suspects for the double murder. The gang is led by a man who organised the murder two years ago of the one-time gang leader Martin "Marlo" Hyland.

Hyland was shot dead in Scribblestown Park, Finglas, in December 2006 in an attack that also claimed the life of 20-year-old Anthony Campbell. The apprentice plumber was working in the house when the killers called to shoot Hyland.

Cronin was a well-known convicted heroin dealer who was being targeted by the Criminal Assets Bureau. Gardaí believe Cronin rather than Moloney was the gunman's target on Wednesday night.

A number of recent attempts had been made to shoot Cronin. In October a gunman opened fire on his car as he was driving close to the house he was living in on the Hampton Wood estate in Finglas.

Gardaí are working on the theory that Moloney was also shot in the head because he would have been able to identify the gunman. Moloney was a father of one and had been living with his partner and child in Ballymun. He was an associate of Cronin's but was not known to gardaí.

Gardaí want to speak to anybody who may have seen the black Volvo S40, UK registration FD 54 CEY, at the murder scene or elsewhere on Wednesday. Gardaí in Fitzgibbon Street can be contacted at (01) 6668432.