Gardaí brace for battles between INLA and gang

GARDAÍ are bracing themselves for a renewal of a violent feud between the INLA and a criminal gang with the imminent release of two INLA men involved in a gruesome battle against the Dublin gang three years ago.

The two were given jail sentences following a bloody fight in Ballymount Industrial Estate, Walkinstown, Dublin, in October 1999, in which 22-year-old INLA man Patrick Campbell was murdered by the drugs gang.

The men, John Creed and Denis Thompson, were part of an INLA group, including Campbell, that falsely imprisoned, stripped and beat members of a south Dublin gang.

But 12 allies of the criminals pounced on the INLA men and inflicted fatal injuries on Campbell with a machete.

Campbell, from Belfast, but with an address at Corduff Park, Blanchardstown, Dublin, died a few days afterwards.

The criminal gang, particularly its 32-year-old leader from Walkinstown, went underground after the incident. But INLA members went after the gang, resulting in a series of shootings and bombings, including the murder of gang member Patrick Neville in April 2000.

Neville, 31, a nightclub bouncer, was shot dead at St Michael’s Estate flat complex in Inchicore.

The INLA is also believed to be behind a bomb attack on another member of the gang in January 2001.

The victim, also a nightclub bouncer, escaped with his life, when the bomb failed to fully explode under his car.

The INLA has also carried out a number of shootings and stabbings against members of the gang recently, particularly in the Crumlin area.

Several members of the INLA gang at the so-called Ballymount Bloodbath were charged and sentenced following a major investigation by gardaí in Crumlin.

John Creed, 32, from Kiltalown Green, Tallaght, Dublin, was sentenced in November 2000 to five year’s imprisonment with the final two years suspended. Creed pleaded guilty to false imprisonment.

The 28-year-old leader of the INLA gang, Declan Duffy, with an address at Fatima Mansions, but a native from Armagh city, was jailed for nine years in January 2001.

His co-accused, Patrick O’Toole, 24, from Kilclare Gardens, Tallaght, Dublin, was given seven years.

Denis Thompson, 25, of Cloonmore Avenue, Tallaght, was jailed for six years for false imprisonment in May 2001.

Creed is expected to be released within days, having served less than two years of his three-year sentence. Thompson is due out this month, having served only a year-and-a-half of his sentence.

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