The Criminal Assets Bureau (Cab) is seeking to identify the whereabouts of Daniel Kinahan in pursuit of its bid to seize a luxury mansion in west Dublin for the benefit of the State, the High Court has heard.
Cab believes the property at No 10 Coldwater Lakes came under the control of the Kinahan cartel in about 2014.
The Cab has also served its proceedings on Thomas 'Bomber' Kavanagh in the high security Belmarsh prison in England but he did not appear, and was not represented, when the case returned via a remote hearing before Mr Justice Michael MacGrath today.
Last month, the court heard that Jim Mansfield jnr and his brother Patrick Joseph (PJ) Mansfield consented to an order waiving any claim by them over the five bedroom property at No 10 Coldwater Lakes, Saggart, Co Dublin.
Cab sought the order in proceedings brought by it under the Proceeds of Crime Act against the brothers and against Daniel Kinahan and Thomas Kavanagh aimed at seizing the property for the benefit of the State.
Anne Mansfield, the brothers’ mother, is not a party to the case but she also consented to the order that she has no claim over the property.
At last month’s hearing, Cab secured an order to serve the proceedings outside of the jurisdiction on Thomas Kavanagh. He was jailed in the UK earlier this year for 21 years for his role in the importation of drugs with a street value of more than £30 million (€36 million) into the UK.
When the Cab case returned to court today, Shelley Horan BL, for Cab, said Kavanagh had been served with the papers and the engagement with him was outlined in affidavits from a Cab officer and from an officer of the Metropolitan Police.
Ms Horan asked that Kavanagh be called in court and the court registrar did so but there was no response and no appearance on his behalf.
Ms Horan said it was not expected there would be. She said a Cab officer had attended Belmarsh prison and was permitted speak to Kavanagh through a cell door. The officer had explained what the matter concerned, specifically mentioned the property at 10 Coldwater Lakes, outlined the evidence opened to the High Court to date and explained the matter was back before the court today.
The officer said Kavanagh told him: “I don’t want to talk to you, go away.”
The officer put the relevant court papers under the cell door and was satisfied service has been effected.
Counsel said it was possible for Kavanagh to dial into today’s hearing and Cab was satisfied he was aware of today’s hearing and its time and location. He replied “no comment” to several questions, including whether he wanted to engage a solicitor to represent him at the hearing or to attend via remote link.
Ms Horan said she was not seeking any orders at this particular hearing against Kavanagh but to establish service was effected.
The second matter before the court concerned Daniel Kinahan and the Bureau’s case is that the property is effectively owned by him and he is a crucial party to the case, she said.
Counsel indicated Cab intended to bring an application to serve Kinahan with the relevant documents out of the jurisdiction but said papers are still being drafted while Cab tries to identify a precise address for Kinahan.
At counsel’s request, Mr Justice Michael McGrath adjourned the matter to June 21st.
In an affidavit at the earlier hearing, a Cab officer said that a former Mansfield employee - a protected witness - had indicated to the bureau the Kinahan cartel made a substantial investment, €4.5 million in cash in two suitcases on Good Friday 2009, through Jim Mansfield jnr, for which they were to receive various properties.
Because the fortunes of the Mansfield business deteriorated significantly in the financial crash and it entered receivership, the deal between the parties soured and the crime group was given the property and cash payments instead, the employee told the Cab.
The employee said Jimmy Mansfield jnr was concerned for his personal safety and had been warned on several occasions by gardaí about threats to his life. There were discussions with Mansfield jnr about the best way to transfer the property to Kavanagh without “leaving a trail”, he said.
In the meantime, it was agreed the Kavanaghs would take possession of the house as they wanted to carry out work and upgrade the CCTV, the employee said.
The Cab was told, around April-May 2014, the keys of 10 Coldwater Lakes were handed to the Kavanaghs and, after that, the Mansfields had nothing to do with that property, the employee said.
The employee was told by others the €4.5 million was owned by the Kinahans and the Kavanaghs were “nobody and only a go-between”.
When interviewed, Jimmy Mansfield jnr said he never got anything off the Kavanaghs and did not owe them anything.
The case is the first time Daniel Kinahan (44) has been named as a respondent in a Cab investigation. He has been named in Garda evidence in previous cases as the leader of the Kinahan cartel. Kavanagh (53) has worked for the cartel in the UK.
In January, Mansfield jnr (54) was found guilty of perverting the course of justice by ordering the destruction of CCTV footage showing him with his former employee Martin Byrne on the morning that Mr Byrne was kidnapped by well-known criminals and INLA figures Dessie O’Hare and Declan “Whacker” Duffy. Mansfield jnr is serving an 18 months sentence on foot of that conviction.
He was acquitted by the Special Criminal Court of a separate charge of conspiracy to falsely imprison Mr Byrne.