KINAHAN cartel gangster Liam Byrne’s former house was rammed and petrol bombed as gardai launch a probe into the property’s latest attack.
The Irish Sun can reveal the home in Grange View, Clondalkin, west Dublin – seized by the Criminal Assets Bureau – was targeted minutes into Wednesday morning just after 12am.
The gaff, deemed to have been bought from the proceeds of crime, was rammed by a navy Volvo jeep through its front window, which was boarded up.
It’s believed a man got out of the vehicle and then threw two petrol bombs in before getting into white Mercedes car being driven by an associate before speeding off.
Neighbours then raised the alarm with Dublin Fire Brigade arriving within minutes to extinguish the blaze, with a number of other properties in the terraced houses being evacuated for their own safety.
The surrounding houses have smoke damage. But early indications are that they are not structurally damaged.
One resident told the Irish Sun: “There are families on both sides of this vacant home, luckily both were not injured but this is completely unacceptable.”
Another said: “Anyone could have been killed, it was a reckless act by people who obviously couldn’t care less about who gets hurt.”
The Irish Sun can reveal gardai suspect Byrne may have orchestrated the fire-bombing from his UK bolthole as a two fingers to CAB.
The gaff was smashed up last year – with Byrne suspected of orchestrating that attack in revenge after losing it.
But they haven’t ruled out the possibility it was organised to send a message to the exiled gangster that he’s no longer in control.
Although Byrne was identified by CAB as running the Byrne Organised Crime Group, they also suspect he’s running the operations of the Kinahan cartel and Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh’s gang in the UK.
Byrne stepped into his brother in law’s shoes after Kavanagh pleaded guilty to a huge cocaine smuggling and money laundering racket.
UNDER SERIOUS PRESSURE
But he has been under serious pressure in recent months with his close pal Sean McGovern still holed up in Dubai amid claims they are no longer on speaking terms.
We revealed earlier this year that although once inseparable, McGovern has distanced himself from his former pals in Dublin as he continues to make a new life in Dubai.
A source said: “Byrne is feeling more and more isolated and this could be him giving two fingers to the gardai.
“This is the type of behaviour that he would orchestrate because he’s nothing more than a thug.
“It’s also possible someone else did this because he has a lot of enemies out there.”
The Irish Sun can also reveal kingpin Byrne remains at the centre of a criminal damage probe after the same property was damaged last year.
On that occasion, windows were smashed and floors ripped up in June 2019.
CAB suspect Byrne ordered his associates to vandalise the house after the High Court ruled it was obtained from the “proceeds of crime”.
On that occasion, two men were seen entering the property with hammers.
‘GUTTED THE PLACE’
Another source said: “They gutted the place before CAB seized it. The bannister was ripped off, the floors were torn up, they smashed up water pipes, marble counters… basically they destroyed the place.
“The council then boarded up the windows and this is the first incident since that.
“And there is substantial damage done to that property now.”
The source added: “Byrne bought that house despite being unemployed.“He made a fortune off it over the years through rent but stayed there himself sometimes.”
The property – now on the market for €220,000 – was one of two of Byrne’s homes seized by CAB under Operation Lamp.
The High Court has also ruled Byrne’s €1million family home in Raleigh Square, Crumlin, was renovated using the “proceeds of crime”.
Byrne’s sister Maria initially opposed CAB’s plan to seize it but later withdrew her objection.
Under Operation Lamp, officers targeted €2.7million worth of assets including four homes worth €2million, 29 vehicles (€544,115), six designer watches (€83,750), two rings (€29,970), a bank account containing €36,760 and €34,840 in cash.
Maria Byrne purchased 2 Raleigh Square legitimately for €250,000 in 2011 after receiving compensation from a traffic accident before her brother moved in with his partner Simoan McEnroe and two children.
The property was registered in Maria’s name but Liam lived there and paid rent on it.
He transformed the home, installing a gym, children’s play area, home cinema and bar.
The lavish fit-out also featured a jacuzzi, walk-in wardrobes, electronic gates, CCTV and state-of-the art TVs.
CAB received an insight into the luxurious lifestyles led by Ireland’s most dangerous crime gang when the house was raided in March, 2016.
‘VERY TOP TIER’
It had been renovated at a cost of €750,000.
As part of their investigations into the ‘Liam Byrne Organised Crime Group’, CAB investigators claimed the hood was at the “very top tier” of organised crime in Ireland.
In submissions to the High Court, CAB outlined his links to Christy ‘Dapper Don’ Kinahan’s cartel.
It claimed: “The target of this investigation is the Liam Byrne Organised Crime Group.
“This group is aligned to the Kinahan Organised Crime Group and is involved in the importation for sale and supply of controlled drugs into this jurisdiction.
“The investigation has uncovered a system of money laundering used by this group to hide the beneficial ownership of the various assets in their possession.
“The main target of this investigation, Liam Byrne, is a close and trusted associate and lieutenant of Daniel Kinahan.
“The KOCG is an international gang involved in the importation and controlled distribution of drugs into this jurisdiction, the UK and mainland Europe. It has bases in Spain, the UK, Netherlands and Dubai.
“Liam Byrne and Sean McGovern are at the very top tier of this group and are regularly spotted in the company of Daniel and (his brother) Christopher Kinahan.”
Although the gang continue to be the focus of investigations by the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau, they are also being targeted by the UK’s National Crime Agency and the DEA in the US.
Key Kinahan bosses are languishing in prison, including Bomber Kavanagh, who is to be sentenced in the UK.
Fat Freddie Thompson is also caged, serving life for the murder of Daithi Douglas in July 2016.
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Liam Brannigan, who conspired with Kinahan cartel murder plotters to assassinate Dubliner Gary Hanley, was jailed for eight years in April and is the third most senior figure behind bars.
He is followed by Dean Howe, who was also convicted of the attempt to target Hanley.
Other members who have been caged include brothers Gary and Glen Thompson, who are serving time over an attempt to kill The Monk’s brother Patsy Hutch.