A 35-year-old man, known to the police for charges including IRA membership, has been shot at a pub in Ballybough, in Dublin’s city center. It is believed that his murder is the sixth in recent months related to the ongoing feud between the Kinahan-Hutch criminal gangs.
The victim has been named as Michael Barr, originally from County Tyrone but living in Dublin city center. He was shot at least three times at the Sunset House, on Summerhill Parade, on Monday evening at about 9.35pm. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The bar is a known stronghold of the criminals associated with gangland boss Gerry “The Monk” Hutch.
Barr was known to the police for his involvement in dissident republicanism. He has appeared before the Special Criminal Court for offenses including possession of stolen property and IRA membership. Last year he came to their attention over a dispute with another known dissident republican.
Police believe that Barr’s murder could be connected to the gangland feud between the Kinahan and Hutch mobs. Barr had been under investigation for suspected links to the shooting at the Regency Hotel, in February. His home was searched by the police last week.
Body of sixth victim of gangland feud being removed from The Sunset House Pub in Dublin 1 this morning pic.twitter.com/vxdXXFiMht— Sarah O'Connor (@Sarah_UTV) April 26, 2016
It is suspected that the AK47 assault rifles used in the mass shooting, at the Regency Hotel, could have been supplied to the Hutch faction by traitors, from within the Kinahan gang ranks. The RTE reports that if the Kinahan gang suspected that dissident republicans supplied weapons to the Hutch gang that would be sufficient reason to target them.
The police are now concerned that the latest attack could bring dissident republicans into the fray, as they may want to seek retaliation for the murder.
There have been six recent murders, associated with Kinahan and Hutch, since the murder of Hutch’s nephew in Spain last September. Five other men have been shot dead in the past five month including an innocent man, Martin O’Rourke, shot two weeks ago.Kinahan gang member, David Byrne was also shot as well as three men connected to the Hutch faction. These were Eddie Hutch (the Monk’s brother), Noel Duggan and Michael Barr.
Following the shooting of Michael Barr on Monday a silver Audi car, with the partial registration 04C, was found burned out on Walsh Road, in Drumcondra. It is believed that three men fled the scene at Walsh Road in the direction of Home Farm Road, in a silver colored saloon car.
An independent politician in the north city center has called for more resources to be given to the police to tackle gang-related crime. Independent Councilor Niall Ring said the introduction of an armed support unit, as planned, in June will come “too late.”
Speaking to the RTE radio show Morning Ireland he said "Whatever resources are needed to give the gardaí [police] absolute control, absolute information - whatever they need, equipment et cetera to has to be given.
"It has to be given now. This 55 armed support unit will not be ready until June.
"June is too late. By June more people may have been murdered."
The Councilor, who was visiting his mother in the area at the time of the shooting told the Irish Mirror that the community is now looking over its shoulder. He said "This community is now living in fear. One girl I spoke to heard the shots as she was in a local shop and described how she went into shock and could not move.
"Also in the pub was a lad with special needs who had to be literally carried home as he could not comprehend the situation he had witnessed but was traumatized by the event."
He continued "I was in the area as I usually drop in to see my Mother when I heard that there was a shooting nearby.
"I went up the road and was told about the shooting in the local pub, the Sunset House.
"I knew the victim as he lived locally."
Cllr Ring added "Obviously everyone in the area knows the man who was shot and there was an air of fear and trepidation as this murder comes shortly after the appalling murder of a well-known local resident, Eddie Hutch and the murder of Martin O'Rourke, two innocent victims inadvertently caught up in a gangland feud.
Police are appealing for information from witnesses. Anyone who may have seen a silver Audi before the first shooting is asked to contact Mountjoy Garda Station on +3531 666 8600, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any police station.
Also on Monday night Thomas Farnan (37) was shot dead in his home in Clondalkin, in south Dublin. Police do not believe the two crimes are related. It is believed that Farnan’s murder was “a more isolated incident” related to a criminal dispute.