Regency Hotel shooting: Man killed in gangland attack named
David Byrne (32) from Crumlin was member of Irish-led crime cartel in southern Spain
Gardaí are fearful an intense period of gangland feuding has started in Dublin after at least four armed men opened fire at a boxing weigh-in open to the public in a city hotel, killing one man and wounding two others on Friday.
He was attending the weigh-in at the Regency Hotel in Drumcondra, near Dublin airport, along with others linked to the gang. The attackers picked out this group when they opened fire.
The attack is believed to have been in retaliation for the murder of Dublin criminal Gary Hutch in southern Spain last September. Hutch was once involved with the Irish-led cartel in Spain.
The two wounded men were taken to the Mater and Beaumont hospitals with gunshot wounds.
The shooting was caught on video recordings of the proceedings at the weigh-in and has been viewed widely online and on television, adding to the public’s horror at the attack in a public place in mid-afternoon.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny described it “as an extreme case” of criminal activity. “The interpretation here is that this is the work of rival criminal gangs in the Dublin area,” he said.
At least four attackers
Gardaí believe there were at least four attackers. They said two were described as wearing “police-style uniforms similar to a SWAT team uniform, including metal helmets” and were armed with automatic weapons. Two others were carrying hand guns.
“One was a man disguised as a woman and wearing an auburn wig and the other was stocky and wearing a beige cap,” a Garda spokesman said.
Garda had received intelligence that there might have been an attack planned for the Clash of the Clans boxing event scheduled for the National Stadium in Dublin on Saturday rather than at the weigh-in on Friday.
One video clip shows the last boxer weighing in at about 2.20pm when the armed men appears in the room and panic breaks out, with people fleeing to safety.
A child who runs to safety through an emergency exit can be heard on the video crying out “Daddy, daddy, help me. What happen?”
Gardaí believe the killers ran from the hotel after the attack before being driven away in a waiting van by another man.
A van was later found burned out at the back of the Charlemont housing estate, off nearby Griffith Avenue. The killers are believed to have fled through a laneway into St Vincent’s GAA club where gardaí believe another vehicle was waiting to take them away.
Members of the media present at the hotel were threatened by the gunmen as they fled. One reporter was warned to stay back by a gunman who pointed his firearm at him at close range.