Sunday, 27 July 2008

Freddie Thompson assassinated in Spain?

22:45 |

Freddie Thompson, leader of one of the feuding Drimnagh/Crumlin gangs, was alive or dead after rumours spread throughout Thompson's associates that he had been assassinated in Spain.Senior garda sources said last night there had been no reports from Spanish police of a murder. Thompson left Dublin last weekend for Spain amid reports of a growing threat to his life. He has been warned several times by gardai about threats to his life.The sources said that there was no evidence of a murder, or disappearance, but did confirm that Thompson's associates believe he is dead. Intelligence reached gardai early yesterday that Thompson's gang were unable to contact him and that it was completely out of character for him to lose contact with his gang.
Thompson, 27, was in Estepona in southern Spain in February when one of his close associates, Paddy Doyle, also 27, was shot dead. The murder has not been solved but Spanish police indicated to gardai that they suspected Doyle -- and Thompson -- had run foul of Turkish drug traffickers.Thompson was on the scene shortly after the murder, though it was not absolutely established if he was travelling in the car in which Doyle was shot, though Spanish police believe he was. A short time later Spanish police seized a car in a nearby car park and found 110kg of cocaine.
Thompson travels between Dublin, Amsterdam and the Costa del Sol. He was arrested in Rotterdam in October 2006 when police seized seven kilos of cocaine, six handguns and ammunition at an apartment he had been used. He evaded prosecution on a technicality when the case came to trial in February 2007.
Thompson is also an associate of Martin Foley, who has been the target of several murder attempts -- the latest in January when he survived being hit by five bullets.
The feud in which Thompson and Foley are caught up began in 2000 when a gang of young drug dealers from the Drimnagh-Crumlin area fell out after gardai seized cocaine in the Holiday Inn in Pearse Street. The gang split and the violence started with the murder of one of the gang in 2001. Since then there have been nine more murders, dozens of attempted murders and hundreds of violent incidents.
The intelligence reaching gardai about Thompson's disappearance come after an upsurge in activity from his enemies, who carried out at least one known assassination attempt early this month and were planning another murder last week.
The spread of Irish gangland violence to Spain is not new and six known Irish criminals have been murdered there in the past four years. In 2004, the leaders of the Westies gang, Stephen Sugg and Shane Coates, were murdered and buried in a secret grave in Alicante. John McKeown, 48, said to be a major figure in international drug trafficking, was shot dead in January last year in Torrevieja. Sean Dunne, 32, from Coolock, was shot dead in September 2005, also near Alicante. And, the body of Cork man Michael 'Danser' Ahern was found stuffed into a freezer in Albuifera, Portugal, in September 2005.
Gardai who know Thompson said last week that the murder in Spain of his friend Paddy Doyle had badly affected him and he had been acting in an erratic manner since.
Doyle was Thompson's main "enforcer" and had personally carried out the assassinations of two of Thompson's rivals. Doyle had been living in Spain since 2005.

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