Former associate of Martin Cahill is survivor of three attempts on his life

 

A career criminal and former associate of Martin Cahill has secured £120,000 damages against State witness Charles Bowden.

Mr Martin Foley had kept a low profile following two attempts on his life in the mid1990s by Brian Meehan, who was convicted of Veronica Guerin's murder on Bowden's testimony.

In September Mr Foley survived an attack in Terenure College grounds but was hit three times in the legs. In court yesterday he walked with crutches.

Gardai believe they foiled another attempt on his life by the Provisional IRA when they intercepted an armed man on a motorcycle close to his Crumlin home last Easter. The IRA also attempted to kidnap him in 1984.

In 1995 and 1996 Meehan, who drove the motorcycle used during the attack on Ms Guerin, is understood to have attempted to kill Mr Foley in south Dublin. Bowden told the Special Criminal Court last year he supplied the Sten sub-machine gun used in the 1996 attack on Mr Foley.

Rivalry over the south Dublin drugs trade led to violence between the Cahill gang and the gang for which Meehan acted as an "enforcer". Mr Foley is understood to have moved to Co Kildare after the two attacks and moved back to Crumlin earlier this year.

During the 1980s Mr Foley was under close Garda surveillance because of his association with Cahill and former INLA leader Dominic McGlinchey, both of whom were shot dead in 1994. He has convictions for threatening a garda with a crossbow and breaking the jaw of a detective.

Mr Foley was also known for his role as spokesman for Concerned Criminals Action Committee.