Kinahan hitman Christopher Slator exposed as thug who tried to kill Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch in Lanzarote
- , Crime Editor
- 8:00, 24 Jul 2022
KINAHAN cartel hitman Christopher Slator is today exposed as the mystery man who tried to kill Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch in Lanzarote.
The Irish Sun can reveal that Slator, 37, is the other contract killer who joined gun for hire Eamon Cumberton, 34, on a murder mission to kill the notorious Irish mob boss in the Canary Islands in December 2015.
Although the pair failed to kill Hutch, they were still in the pay of Daniel Kinahan’s mob when they shot Michael Barr, 35, five times in the head at the Sunset House pub in Summerhill Parade, Dublin 1, on April 25, 2016.
Their mission to Spain failed because Hutch fled when he spotted the pair after they walked into a pub.
Despite their failure on that occasion, the duo remained in the pay of the Kinahan cartel and were one of TEN hit teams terrorising the capital after the killing of David Byrne at the Regency Hotel on February 5, 2016.
But Slator’s association with the Kinahan gang is now at an end after he was jailed for life last week for dad-of-five Barr’s brutal murder.
- Former Assistant Commissioner Pat Leahy also told how the conviction of the hit team — which included UK killer David Hunter, 43 — had saved “countless lives”.
And we also reveal how the investigation is still ongoing — with Gardai hoping to charge those at the top of the Kinahan cartel who sanctioned the murder.
Barr was targeted because Kinahan’s mob wrongly identified him as being a member of the hit team at the Regency.
Mr Leahy said: “The fact that this individual was implicated in an attempted murder in Lanzarote shows there was considerable involvement with the Kinahan Organised Crime Group.
The Barr murder happened at the beginning of the feud and we were blessed to have top-class and experienced investigators who could absorb the pressure and stay focused.
“Had all of the significant members of this hit team not been arrested and taken out of circulation as they were, I’ve no doubt other lives would have been lost.
“Their capacity to operate was reduced significantly because we were on to them very early on.”
As part of our latest revelations on the dismantling of the cartel sub-cell, we also reveal details of the lock-up used by the gang to plan their hits.
The small garage — rented from an unsuspecting owner using fake names and bogus IDs — was just four minutes’ walk from the Sunset House pub.
Gardai located it after using CCTV to track the movements of the Audi used by the gang.
Once they gained access to it, the investigators also established that the lock-up had been cleaned with bleach.
During their search of the garage, they also recovered two revolvers.
They also recovered a thumb print of cartel fixer Martin Aylmer, 36, from a bottle of bleach left behind.
Aylmer — recruited to the cartel by gangster Douglas Glynn — was to receive a three and a half year sentence for providing phones to Slator’s hit team.
‘PERSON OF INTEREST’
And as Slator begins the first days of his life sentence, we reveal how he was classified by investigators as someone “heavily involved” with major gangsters, including Cumberton.
He emerged as a “person of interest” in the investigation within two weeks of the killing and was arrested on December 20, 2020.
During seven interviews with gardai, he refused to reply to most of their questions and could not explain why his DNA was recovered from the Audi.
And during his time in prison, a jail source told us how he was classified as “extremely aggressive and violent”.
The day after the murder, Slator flew to Dubai on flight EK164 before travelling on to Bangkok. He was joined by Cumberton a day later on April 27.
Unknown to the pair, they had left vital evidence in their getaway car after their attempts to torch it failed.
Their attempts to cover their tracks were thwarted by Det Garda Michael Harkin and Det Garda Sheila O’Brien.
While Det O’Brien liaised with her colleagues in command and control, Det Harkin extinguished the blaze in the car.
Their actions led to the investigation team recovering Slator’s DNA from runners and a Freddie Krueger mask. DNA evidence from the other two hit team members was also recovered.
Two Makarov handguns and two Glocks were also seized by gardai.
Due to the evidence stacked against them, Slator, Hunter and Cumberton are now serving life sentences.
LINES OF INQUIRY
The huge investigation involved gardai following 520 separate lines of inquiry, taking 500 statements and examining hundreds of hours of CCTV footage.
The Garda Representatives Association’s National Executive member for the DMR North division, Declan O’Carolan, praised the actions of his colleagues that night.
Garda O’Carolan said: “It’s fruitious there wasn’t an explosion when Det Garda Michael Harkin put his life on the line when he was extinguishing the fire in the car.
“His professionalism and commitment to extinguishing the fire was crucial in the preservation of evidence.
“Without the intervention of Det Garda Harkin and Det Garda O’Brien that night valuable evidence may have been lost and future prosecution jeopardised.
“Their actions that night also reflected the realities of frontline policing in what was a very difficult period.”
‘COLD, CALCULATED AND CALLOUS’
The initial investigation at the time of the murder was undertaken by detectives from the Bridewell Garda station
The case was transferred as officers from the North Central Division were already investigating the feud-related murders of Eddie Hutch and Martin O’Rourke and trying to prevent further bloodshed.
The probe was run by Det Insp John Bates, Supt Dan Flavin, Det Supt Eunan Dolan, Chief Supt Sean Ward and Assistant Commissioner Pat Leahy, who are all now retired.
The latter stages of the investigations into Hunter and Slator were undertaken by Det Insp Mark Jordan, Supt Martin Mooney, Supt Jonathan O’Brien, Det Supt Colm Murphy, their teams and support from garda national units.
Supt Mooney said: “The murder of Michael Barr was cold, calculated and callous.
“It was well planned but thwarted through the quick-thinking actions of Det Garda Harkin and Det Garda O’Brien who prevented vital evidence from being destroyed.
“I would like to commend everyone involved in this investigation for their perseverance and determination and I would also like to thank the community for their assistance.”