Garda chiefs have raised the threat of gangland violence in the run up to the funeral of David Byrne on Monday from moderate to high.
The escalation in threat level comes as gardaí this weekend conduct a security sweep on the church where the funeral Mass of Mr Byrne will be held.
Bomb sniffer dogs are being brought in to ensure the Church of St Nicholas of Myra, Francis St, in Dublin’s south inner city, is clear of explosives. The sweep will also include church grounds and part of Francis St.
The Irish Examiner understands Garda intelligence briefings have raised the threat of violence from moderate — after the murder of Eddie Hutch Sr last Monday — to high as of yesterday.
The reasons for the escalation are not clear, but may be linked to intelligence coming into the Crime and Security Section at Garda headquarters.
Around 80 people — 40 from each of the two gangs — are being monitored by gardaí on separate sides of the city.
Garda teams in adjacent districts are monitoring around 40 members of the Kinahan crime syndicate in the Crumlin-Drimnagh and south inner city areas.
Gardaí in the north inner city are monitoring some 40 people associated with the Hutch network.
After the security sweep of the church, there will be a 24-hour uniformed presence until the funeral Mass at 12.30pm.
The remains of Mr Byrne, a 33-year-old father of two, were brought to the family home in Crumlin yesterday evening, where he will be waked over the weekend.
A round-the-clock policing plan has been drawn up, with high visibility checkpoints and armed patrols. Up to 60 gardaí will be on duty on Monday, assisted by the Garda helicopter. Gardaí will place close attention to social functions on Monday.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny said yesterday: “It’s tough on the families involved. The gardaí know what they have to do.”
The funeral of Mr Hutch is due to take place next week.
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