Judge’s comments a blow to Kinahan attempts to whitewash his reputation
First time a judge has acknowledged in open court the scale and depravity of the Kinahan gang as foot soldier jailed for 7½ years
Mark Capper: was jailed for seven and a half years for participating in activities intended to facilitate the commission of the murder of Patsy Hutch in 2018.
However the comments made by Mr Justice Tony Hunt during Capper’s sentencing are another blow, albeit minor, to Daniel Kinahan’s attempts to whitewash his reputation on the international boxing scene.
The judge said he accepted the evidence of the Garda that the Kinahan organised crime group, known colloquially as “the cartel”, was involved in organised drugs and firearms dealing on an international scale and that it used “execution style” murders to protect its interest.
The court also accepted the gang is organised in a hierarchical structure” with “cells and sub-cells” to “segregate activities and limit knowledge” among gang members.
It is not the first time a judge has stated the Kinahans are a major force in organised crime. In an unpublished judgment two years ago, the cartel was named as being involved in the “the importation and distribution of controlled drugs and firearms within this jurisdiction” and Daniel Kinahan was named as one of its leaders, having taken control from his father, Christy, several years previously.
But Mr Justice Hunt’s remarks are significant insofar as they mark the the first time a judge has acknowledged in open court the scale and depravity of the Kinahan gang.
Taken together, both judges’ remarks mean Daniel Kinahan’s involvement in the top levels of organised crime is no longer a matter of belief – it is accepted as fact by courts, despite the 42-year-old’s lack of previous convictions.
The remarks are supported by the views of police forces across the world, including the FBI and the DEA, that the Kinahans are one of the largest and most sophisticated drugs gangs operating in Europe.
Mr Justice Hunt’s remarks will have aggravated Kinahan but will do little to affect the sophisticated PR campaign he has launched to rehabilitate his reputation and establish himself as a legitimate power broker in world of boxing.
The campaign is not focused on Ireland, where Kinahan’s reputation is beyond redemption, but on boxing fans and decision-makers in the Middle East, the UK and the US.
Gardaí believe Kinahan is connected to a mysterious and factually inaccurate documentary about the infamous Regency Hotel shooting which paints the gang boss in a sympathetic light. He has also hired a high-end law firm and brand management company to manage negative publicity.
The end goal is to place him in a position to broker a bout between heavyweights Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua, a fight which is expected to be held in the Middle-East and will result in hundreds of millions of profits for those involved.
With such a payday on the horizon, thoughts of Mark Capper, a drug addict with special needs, sitting a jail cell 6,000 miles away are unlikely to trouble Daniel Kinahan.