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Female arrested in connection with death of Mark ‘Guinea Pig’ Desmond

Female arrested in connection with death of Mark ‘Guinea Pig’ Desmond

Garda have arrested a 42-year-old woman in connection with the murder of thug Mark ‘Guinea Pig’ Desmond.

She was arrested in the west Dublin area this morning and is detained under Section 30 – Offences against the State Act 1939 at Clondalkin Garda Station.

Five people, four men and a woman, are now currently in custody in relation to this investigation. 

Two men were arrested in the west Dublin area this morning and are detained under Section 50 - Criminal Justice Act 2007 at stations in the DMR West.

The men, both in their 20s were arrested following a planned operation involving the local Detective Unit, Regional Armed Support Unit and other local units and took place in the Clondalkin area of Dublin.

Yesterday a former criminal associate and close pal of Mark Desmond was arrested by armed gardai in relation to his murder.

Desmond, who was known as the ‘Guinea Pig’, was shot dead last December in a west Dublin park.

He was the chief suspect in at least four murders and had been working for a drug trafficking gang at the time of his killing.

Yesterday morning, detectives and armed uniformed gardai raided two properties in west Dublin where they arrested two men, aged in their 20s and 30s.

One of the men was a longtime associate of Desmond (41) and had been involved in the drug trade with him.

The man (39) is also a target of the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) and his home was recently raided as part of a garda probe into his finances.

He is originally from the Clondalkin area but currently has an address in Lucan. He was also previously questioned in relation to a €3m drugs bust.

However, he was never charged in relation to that seizure.

The other man currently being questioned, who is in his late 20s, is a business associate of the 39-year-old.

Both were previously listed as directors of a west Dublin motor company, but that business was dissolved last year.

They were detained yesterday morning following an operation by Lucan detectives, the Armed Support Unit and local gardai. Two homes in Clondalkin and Lucan were raided as part of the operation.

The men are currently being questioned under Section 50 of the Criminal Justice Act at Lucan and Ronanstown Garda Stations in relation to Desmond’s murder.

Desmond was shot dead on December 2 in Griffeen Valley Park, Lucan.

The career criminal was blasted at least three times in the head.

 

At his inquest in April, gardai gave evidence that he was formally identified by his fingerprints.

A post-mortem performed by Deputy State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis gave the cause of death as multiple gunshot wounds.

Extensive inquiries have been carried out by detectives due to the large number of enemies Desmond had made during his lengthy criminal career.

Gardai believe he attended a crime summit with two brothers in the area before being shot dead in the park.

Such was the disdain for Desmond that relatives of one of his victims arrived at the crime scene hours after the murder to openly celebrate his death.

Desmond had survived a number of attempts on his life, including a botched shooting in Tallaght in 2005 and a failed hit in Ballyfermot in 2010.

In the latter incident, he was shot at by a number of men in the Memorial Park but managed to flee on a quad bike.

The thug was linked to at least four murders but was never convicted.

He was the only man to have been charged in the notorious 2000 “Canal Murders” investigation.

Patrick Murray (20) and Darren Carey (19) were shot in drug-related killings and their bodies dumped in the Grand Canal at Karneystown, Co Kildare, between December 19, 1999 and January 10, 2000.

In 2002, the murder charges were dropped when a prosecution witness retracted her statement implicating Desmond.

He was sentenced to eight years for unlawful possession of firearms with intent to endanger life, but the Court of Criminal Appeal later overturned his conviction and sentence.

The tubby criminal was also the chief suspect in the murder of Anthony Cannon, an associate of jailed gang boss Brian Rattigan.

He is further suspected of involvement in the murder of James Kenny McDonagh, whose body was discovered in 2011 after he had been missing for more than a year.

McDonagh was shot in the back of the head and his body buried in a shallow grave in the Dublin Mountains.