Fears of more violence after gangland shooting in Dublin

Convicted criminal Keith Murtagh (32) injured in second attempt on his life

Keith Murtagh and his partner were briefly taken into protective custody following an attempt on his life in Sheriff Street in Dublin’s north inner city last month (above), where the attackers mistakenly killed 24-year-old father of three Martin O’Rourke instead. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Keith Murtagh and his partner were briefly taken into protective custody following an attempt on his life in Sheriff Street in Dublin’s north inner city last month (above), where the attackers mistakenly killed 24-year-old father of three Martin O’Rourke instead. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

 

Gardaí are concerned that the gangland feud which has claimed five lives in gun attacks since the start of the year may escalate further after another shooting in Dublin on Saturday.

The man injured in the shooting in Ballyfermot was Keith Murtagh (32), a known criminal believed to have associations with the Hutch gang.

Murtagh (32) and his girlfriend, who is also in her 30s, received what were described as minor injuries caused by fragments of shattered glass after a number of shots were fired through the window of their house in Cherry Orchard Court in the early hours of Saturday morning.

It is known that Murtagh and his partner were briefly taken into protective custody following an attempt on his life in Sheriff Street in Dublin’s north inner city last month, where the attackers mistakenly killed 24-year-old father of three Martin O’Rourke instead.

Murtagh is regarded as a key associate of Derek “Del Boy” Hutch, who is the brother of Gary Hutch and nephew of Eddie Hutch, both of whom have been shot dead by the Kinahan gang as part of the feud.

Murtagh has convictions for offences ranging from road traffic infringements to attempted robbery and possession of a weapon with intent to endanger life.

In 2010 he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his involvement in an attempted armed robbery of a cash in transit van in Lucan the previous year. He served six years before being released in early 2016.

Members of the Kinahan crime cartel which operates between Dublin and Spain have targeted anyone close to the Hutch family since the murder of David Byrne (32) during a boxing-weigh in the Regency Hotel in February.

Dublin City Council’s policing committee has asked for an urgent meeting with Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald following the attack.

Committee deputy chair and Ballyfermot-based Sinn Féin candidate Daithí Doolan said: “The residents are living in fear. They hadn’t expected on the early hours of Saturday morning to be dealing with an attack on one of their neighbours.

“That gun attack was horrendous, it shouldn’t have happened, the people involved in it were wrong. This feud is spreading out, there are more lives under threat, and innocent lives under threat.

“We’ve requested an urgent meeting with minister Frances Fitzgerald and her department to discuss what resources are needed to be brought to bare on Dublin to end this feud,” he added.