Gardaí investigating gangland shooting find burnt-out car

Gardaí investigating gangland shooting find burnt-out car

Gardaí have found a burnt-out car believed to have been used in last night's gangland murder.

A man in his late thirties was gunned down as he was walking along Station Road in Portmarnock at 10.30pm last night.

The victim was shot several times, including once in the head, in the street near his apartment.

The man was named locally as Sean Winters and is thought to have moved to the area from another part of north Dublin.

The shooting happened just 20 feet from the patio doors of ground-floor apartments.

Seven men and three women were detained in a series of early-morning raids in the north of the city.

They were being held separately at Garda stations across the capital.

The murder took place near the Dart station and less than 100 yards from the The Links apartment complex where the dead man lived.

His body remained in the road this morning as the area was sealed off and commuters made their way to work.

The grounds of the apartment complex, a short walk from the exclusive Portmarnock Golf Club, were also closed off for forensic teams to inspect.

A Garda spokesman said the victim was gunned down at around 10.30pm last night.

Raids took place in north Dublin less than 10 hours after the murder and it is understood a number of those being questioned were detained in one house.

The suspects are aged from 24 to 56, a Garda spokesman said.

No firearms were recovered in the raids.

The dead man is the 19th person to have been shot dead this year and the gun attack follows an attempted murder in Killester, north Dublin, on Saturday morning.

Detectives from Malahide were in charge of the investigation and the State Pathologist has been called in.

Irish Rail said Dart and commuter services from the station should run as normal despite road closures on Station Road and the Strand Road junction.

A Garda spokesman said the 10 suspects were being held under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act. They can be questioned for 72 hours.

Detectives also issued an appeal for witnesses and anyone who may have been in the area at the time to contact the incident room at Swords Garda Station.

Concerned parents tried to shield their young children from white-suited forensic officers and the police tapes as they walked past the crime scene to a creche inside the Links complex.

A blue tarpaulin covered the victim’s body, which was removed shortly before 11am after being examined by Deputy State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis.

A local man, who did not want to be named, heard the gun attack.

“I heard a couple of voices, fast movement, and then I heard a bang but I didn’t know it was a shot,” he said.

“Then I heard more fast movement of feet. I was in the back room and looked out and I saw a car driving away.

“I couldn’t recognise the car or colour of it, but I saw the rear lights. Then the ambulance came very soon after that and fire brigade came.

“It seemed to me that the car had been involved with something and was parked up on the path.”

The middle-aged resident said other neighbours did not even hear the shooting.

“The guy next door also heard a shot but didn’t recognise it as a shot either. The people upstairs heard nothing ’cause they had music on,” he said.

“This is a very quiet place. It’s very seldom you’d even hear young fellas with drink on them at night-time. It’s quiet every night – the only thing you’d hear is cars and aeroplanes.”

Another resident said she had walked from the Dart station less than an hour before the shooting.

“It was very quiet but well lit-up,” she said.

“This is so surprising. It’s sad. It’s just everywhere in Ireland now.

“We’ve had a bit of trouble around here lately, with the gates rammed and broken.”

Local Labour councillor Peter Coyle said people in the area were taken aback by the killing.

“Certainly it’s a shock to the whole community that this whole drugs war and criminals have come to such a quiet place as Portmarnock,” he said.

“It’s also a gated community so the fact that he was attacked on the road, as there would have been security in the apartments themselves, is quite significant. The attack happened on the road because normally vehicles can’t get in to these apartments without a security pass.”

Mr Coyle said there are around 600 apartments in the vicinity of the Dart station, with many people renting and not known to their neighbours.

He added: “There has been the odd case of rumours about some drug people living here but obviously when you have apartments apartment with 600-odd apartments then you obviously find everyone and anyone living here.”

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