What Shocks me is, they are all Writing Books, yet the Kinahan Cartel, are still Active, not as Strong, but Drugs, are all over Ireland, every Village, and Town, from Bantry Bay, to Blacksod Bay. Come Forward, the Brave Garda, and Write the True Book, on Garda Corruption, and the Heavy Gangs, and the Rogue Gardai, involved, in Gangland Drug Crime?

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Retired Garda says Regency Hotel attack a ‘dismal milestone’ – but forced action on gangland crime

Michael O’Toole – Wednesday

One of Ireland’s best known crime busters has admitted the infamous Regency Hotel attack by the Hutch gang was a dismal milestone in modern gangland history.

And, writing in a new book to celebrate 100 years of the Garda Siochana, former Assistant Commissioner Michael O’Sullivan also says he believes the attack was a catalyst that made the government get serious on tackling organised crime – including the Kinahan cartel.

Mr O’Sullivan says in a book called The Guardians, 100 Years of An Garda Siochana that the February 2016 Regency Airport Hotel attack in north Dublin in which the Hutch gang tried to murder Daniel Kinahan, 45, but only succeeded in killing pal David Byrne, 33, was one of the darkest days in gangland Ireland.

Mr O’Sullivan, who at one stage headed up the Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau says: “In February, 2016 a group of heavily armed men carrying Kalashnikov assault rifles and dressed as members of the ERU disrupted a boxing weigh-in at the Regency Airport Hotel in Dublin.

“A man was shot and fatally wounded, sparking the Kinahan/Hutch feud which led to a series of murders over a two-year period.”

He adds: “The murders were organised by drug cartel members residing outside the jurisdiction and were carried out by an assortment of hit teams.

“A dismal milestone in the history of criminality in the country, these events were a catalyst to An Garda Siochana’s receiving additional resources, which assisted them in apprehending the majority of those responsible.

“DOCB was particularly successful in subsequent seizures of nearly €20 million in drugs and significant amounts of firearms, and in preventing over 40 murders.”

And he adds that the Kinahan/Hutch feud was the worst in Irish history – but that gardai defeated the cartel.

He says: “The success of An Garda Siochana in combatting the most lethal criminal feud in the history of the State is a reflection of the resilience, professionalism and bravery of the gardai involved.

“The murders and subsequent successful investigations highlighted the power and ruthlessness of the Irish drug cartels at an international level.”

Former Garda Assistant Commissioner Michael O’Sullivan, who now heads the EU’s anti-drugs smuggling agency, MAOC-N.© The irish Daily Star

Nobody has been convicted over the Regency Airport Hotel attack, but Gerry “The Monk” Hutch, 59, is currently before the courts over it.

He is charged with the murder of David Byrne, a key ally of Daniel Kinahan – the man now at the centre of an international policing dragnet.

Daniel and his father Christy and brother Christopher, 41, are all subject of major sanctions by US and authorities in Dubai where they are holed up.

And American authorities – who say they are all bosses of the massive Kinahan drugs cartel – have also offered $5 million rewards for their arrest and conviction.

Former Sinn Fein councillor Jonathan Dowdall, 44, is also charged with David Byrne’s murder and several men face lesser charges.

Meanwhile, Noirin O’Sullivan – the first female commissioner who suddenly retired in 2017 less than three years after taking over the top job – also writes for the book.

When Ms O’Sullivan retired she said she was leaving after an “unending cycle” of investigations and inquiries that meant she could not work to bring about the “deep cultural and structural reforms” needed within An Garda Siochana.

Ms O’Sullivan started her career as an undercover drugs officer and spent much of her time in the force as a serious crime detective.

She says: “As the Irish organised crime world became more transnational, profitable, dangerous and ruthless, the Garda response adapted and I was at the forefront of forging European and international law enforcement cooperation and efforts to combat organised crime, leading and participating in several international operations.”

She makes no reference to the controversies that bedevilled her time as Commissioner – but does talk about bad times in any officer’s career.

She says: “I was not always lucky, sometimes I was seriously unlucky.

“But I learned resilience and realised that the challenges I faced provide case study material for those who follow.

“With luck, the next female Commissioner will have some of the problems ironed out before she starts.

“She will need to understand that doing the best you can do, no matter what the opposition, delivers huge pride and allows you to survive and thrive – even through the bad times that happen in every career.”

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris, Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Justice Minister have also contributed to the book, which is published by the O’Brien Press and available in bookshops now.

The book also features a host of photographs from the force’s 100 year history.

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