Allies of Kinahan cartel boss Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh snub English court appearance over cocaine importation charges
Both men were in the process of getting their COVID vaccines
Two allies of Kinahan cartel boss Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh have had arrest warrants issued against them — for snubbing an English court over cocaine importation charges.
The warrants were issued by a crown court judge after Gary Vickery and Daniel Canning failed to attend the hearing in Ipswich with Kavanagh yesterday afternoon.
Kavanagh (52) is in custody, and the court heard Vickery was in Spain and Canning was in Dublin, but both men were in the process of getting jabbed against COVID and would not be fully vaccinated until August 7 and 9 respectively.
But, despite Vickery and Canning apologising and attending the case remotely, Judge Martyn Levett decided to issue warrants for their arrest — and said it was up to the state to decide if it wanted to seek the pair’s extradition to the UK.
The judge said: “My inclination is despite the fact that their vaccinations are on August 7 and 9 respectively, I cannot see any reason why I should not issue a warrant for their arrest.
“It is then up to the prosecution whether they apply to extradite…that is the prosecution’s issue, not the court.
“If they arrive in the UK, provided the authorities issue the warrants in the right way, as soon as they touch down, then they will be arrested, which would be my plan in any event.”
Kavanagh, Canning and Vickery pleaded guilty last year to conspiracy to import Class A and Class B drugs, as well as money laundering charges in June 2020 — and have yet to be sentenced.
Kavanagh, regarded as the right hand man of cartel boss Daniel Kinahan (44), is locked up in an Essex prison awaiting sentence, but Gary Vickery (36), who has an address in the UK and Daniel Canning (41) with an address in Walkinstown, Dublin are both still free.
The three men’s legal teams are now trying to get their potential sentences reduced.
And the court heard yesterday that the basis of Kavanagh’s plea for mitigation is that he admitted smuggling just 30kg of cocaine into the UK — not the 300kg the state alleges.
But Judge Levett was told there is no difference in sentencing guidelines for the two amounts
And he said: “The decision then is left to me as to whether I regard there to be a substantial difference between the two.”
The case was adjourned until August 9.