Massive garda search for torso of murdered Drogheda teen (17)
Gardaí are this afternoon carrying out a massive search of wasteground for the torso of a 17-year-old boy who was murdered in January of last year.
Around 30 officers are involved in the search which is located at a large site at the back of the Rathmullen estate, in the Drogheda town.
The juvenile male cannot be named for legal reasons but his brutal murder in Drogheda and dismemberment of his body caused nationwide shock last year.
Officers were acting on “key intelligence” for today’s search operation and are hopeful of finding the only part of the teenager’s body that remains missing.
There has been no arrests in this phase of the probe and no properties were searched today.
“These searches are very comprehensive and very thorough – garda forensic experts are in place,” a senior source said.
Gardaí say local members of the division are being assisted by the Louth Divisional Search unit, Garda Dog Units, Garda Water Units and the Technical Bureau from Garda Headquarters.
The 17-year-old was murdered and dismembered at a house in Drogheda as part of a feud involving two gangs in the Co Louth town.
Partial remains, including his limbs, were found in a bag in Moatview Gardens, Coolock, on January 13 last year.
Two days later his head and hands were found in the boot of a burnt-out car at Trinity Terrace near Ballybough in Dublin.
Eight people have already been arrested in the massive murder investigation with two men already before the courts in relation to it.
Senior sources said a number of other people are expected to be arrested in the coming weeks.
Last month notorious Drogheda feud gangster Paul Crosby was released without charge after being arrested in Mountjoy Prison and questioned about the murder.
The chief suspect in the case was notorious north Dublin gangster Robbie Lawlor who was shot dead last April in Belfast.
Since the January 2019 murder gardai have continued with a major clampdown on the feuding gangs with €1.2 million worth of drugs and €1.5 million in cash seized in Co Louth in the past year with 200 people being arrested for drug dealing.
In Drogheda alone, 95 drug dealing suspects were arrested and over €500,000 worth of drugs were seized in the Co Louth town under Operation Stratus.
In an interview with the Sunday World last February after he discovered the butchered remains of the teenager, a 39-year-old Darndale told the newspaper about his horror at making the shocking find.
He told the Sunday World that his ordeal began shortly after 10pm on Monday, January 13 last year, when he was drawn outside his home in Moatview by the sound of sirens coming from a garda chase in the area.
“It was a long sports bag – I didn’t notice a brand on it. My first thought was that it was after being thrown out of a car and left there because of the police being in the area.”
He continued: “There were three things I thought it might have been.
“I thought, maybe someone had forgotten their gym gear; that it was stolen goods or it was drugs. And there was drugs found out there not so long ago so it wouldn’t have been too far of a leap.
“I picked it up and I went into the house with it. The bag was heavy – that’s what really piqued my interest.
“I thought there’s something important in this. We opened it up — me and another person in the house — after we brought it out to the front room.
“She thought it was meat from an animal but when I looked at it closely I said: ‘That’s not meat … that’s a human leg’. And then I saw the arms and a pair of flip flops.
“The man continued that he went into a panic when he realised what he had brought into his home.
“When I realised what we had in the house I ran back out with it and put it back where it came from.
“By then all the neighbours came out because we were screaming ‘there are body parts in the bag. And one of the neighbours rang the gardai,” he said.