Speaking at the funeral of 17-year-old Keane Mulready-Woods, who was horrifically dismembered by a rival drug gang, the priest called for a stop to this brutal violence and hoped this death would serve as a message to other youths.
Keane Mulready-Woods was laid to rest on Thursday (Feb 13) at the Holy Family Church in Ballsgrove, County Louth, almost a month after his dismembered remains were found in a bag, in a north Dublin suburb.
Parish Priest Fr Phil Gaffney said that it was too easy for young people in Drogheda to obtain drugs and that the ongoing gang feud had to end soon.
"Drug-taking, doing a line of coke, has become as normal as having a drink," Gaffney said.
The priest said that he hoped that young people in Drogheda would learn from Mulready-Woods' mistakes and not become involved with the wrong people.
He urged youths to "learn from his mistakes, getting involved with dangerous criminals, thinking some of them were his friends and yet they would sacrifice him in such a brutal manner."
He said that Mulready-Woods' murder should serve as a warning to any teenager with aspirations of becoming involved in gangland crime that the lure of money and gifts would ultimately end in disaster and tragedy.
Gaffney labeled the murder an "appalling act of wickedness and evil" and said the teenager had been lost in the most "gruesome way."
The priest said that there was a great deal of fear in Drogheda because criminals were taking it upon themselves to be "judge, jury, and executioner."
Mulready-Woods' murder was the source of scandal and horror when his body parts were discovered in a sports bag in Coolock, Dublin, on Jan. 13.
Gardaí believe that he was tortured and murdered in a house in Drogheda on Jan. 12 before his dismembered body was transported to Dublin to send a message.
Two days later, Mulready-Woods' DNA was also found inside a burnt-out car in Dublin's north inner city.