Hunt is on, for Rogue Garda, Who passed on Vital Information, to a Third Party, and put Lives in Danger,

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Garda security tightens for Lunney and colleagues amid ‘credible’ new threat

 4th June 2022

Gardaí have launched a major security operation around Kevin Lunney and his fellow directors at the former Quinn companies after receiving reliable intelligence that some of them were being targeted for attack.

The Irish Independent understands that “credible” information was received in the past few days.

Garda chiefs ordered the alert on Thursday after an assessment of intelligence found an attack on the directors could be imminent.

The five directors of Mannok (formerly QIH) – Kevin Lunney, his brother Tony, Liam McCaffrey, John McCartin and Dara O’Reilly – were immediately warned of the new threat by the PSNI and gardaí.

Extra gardaí, including members of the Armed Support Unit, have been deployed to protect Tony Lunney, John McCartin and Daragh O’Reilly, who are deemed to be most at risk.

It is suspected that the paymaster responsible for ordering the abduction and torture of Kevin Lunney in September 2019 may have hired the services of two known republican terrorists in Northern Ireland to attack the directors living in Cavan and Leitrim.

Sources said there has been a noticeable increase in police activity in the vicinity of the directors’ homes and workplaces.

“The threats are being taken very seriously and an operation is in place to ensure that no one is at risk,” a source said.

The directors of the company did not respond to a request for comment.

This latest threat is assessed as being the most serious since Kevin Lunney was kidnapped.

The horrific crime was the culmination of an almost decade-long campaign of violence targeting the companies former billionaire Sean Quinn lost when his empire crumbled.

Mr Quinn has consistently condemned the abduction of his former protege, saying the suspected paymaster and associates who ordered the kidnapping were not acting in his name.

The paymaster is estimated to have paid crime boss Cyril ‘Dublin Jimmy’ McGuinness up to €1m to orchestrate more than 70 attacks on company property before he was instructed to escalate to abducting Mr Lunney.

The threat levels against the directors receded when gardaí arrested the gang responsible. McGuinness died two months after the abduction.

He suffered a fatal heart attack when UK police raided the English safe house where he was hiding.

However, gardaí and PSNI assessments suggest threat levels against the directors have remained high.

Sources revealed that the paymaster has been trying to find hardened criminals prepared to attack the high-profile directors again, despite the police protection in place.

“The attack on Kevin Lunney was a step too far, and most criminals will run a mile from getting involved, no matter how much cash is on the table, especially after seeing the long sentences handed down to the culprits for that crime,” a source said.

“That is why it has taken so long to find replacements for Dublin Jimmy to escalate the threat levels.”

Last December, three Dublin members of McGuinness’s gang were sentenced to terms of between 15 and 30 years by the Special Criminal Court for abducting and intentionally causing harm to Mr Lunney.

Alan Harte, who was described as the ringleader, was sentenced to 30 years, while his accomplices, Alan O’Brien (40) and Darren Redmond (27) were sentenced to 25 and 15 years respectively.

A fourth man, Luke O’Reilly, from Co Cavan, was found not guilty.

During a harrowing two-and-a-half-hour ordeal, Mr Lunney’s leg was broken with a wooden bat, his face and body were slashed with a Stanley knife and his wounds were doused in bleach.

The knife was also used to carve the letters QIH – for Quinn Industrial Holdings – into his chest.

Throughout the torture session, the businessman was repeatedly told he and his co-directors must resign their directorships immediately.

Separately, GSOC is involved in a related public-interest investigation, launched in January 2020.

The garda watchdog is looking into allegations that sensitive statements made by director John McCartin following the Lunney abduction to gardaí in Co Leitrim were unlawfully disclosed to a third party by a garda member. 

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