A man described as a ‘heavy’ in a major criminal gang was lucky to escape with his life after he was shot twice outside a Dublin pub.
Gardaí believe the 32-year-old drove to Ruby Finnegans pub in Ballyfermot, south west Dublin, late on Tuesday night to meet someone.
A lone gunman walked up to his parked car at around 11.10pm and fired a number of shots from a handgun, hitting him twice, once in the chest and once in the arm.
The victim managed to drive to Cloverhill Prison where he summoned assistance. He was taken to Tallaght Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery.
“His injures are not life threatening but he is lucky to be alive,” said a garda source.
Gardaí said the victim, originally from nearby Drimnagh but with an address in Saggart, west Dublin, was well known to them. He was used as a “heavy” in a criminal gang operating in the Drimnagh-Crumlin-Rialto area of the city.
This gang is led by a notorious drug trafficker who fled to Spain a number of years ago, leaving the operation of his business here to a number of senior players.
Gardaí said the victim, an avid body builder, faced a number of drug charges and suspect that he may have been targeted after a consignment of drugs, he was asked to hold, was seized and he was unable to pay back the value of the drugs.
Detectives are examining his associates as part of their investigation into establishing who might have had a motive for the attempted murder.
The getaway car was found on fire at Golden Bridge Terrace, Inchicore, at 11.30pm. Gardaí suspect the location, with adjacent bridge access to Drimnagh, provided the killer with an escape route.
However, the Audi was not completely gutted and gardaí recovered a firearm from inside the car.
This has been handed over to the Garda Technical Bureau for DNA, forensic and ballistic analysis.
The bureau is also conducting an examination at the scene of the shooting on Sarsfield Road.
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