NewsCrime Desk

Kinahan lieutenant banged up over €7.5k of unpaid M50 toll fines

Crime DeskBy Patrick O'Connell
Liam Roe
Liam Roe

PERMA-TANNED Kinahan Cartel lieutenant Liam Roe was banged up in Mountjoy Prison overnight this week after being arrested over five unpaid M50 toll fines totalling €7,500.

The 37-year-old feud target – nicknamed Tango One – was brought to the prison by armed Gardaí on Tuesday night – and held until a relative arrived at the prison on Wednesday morning with the full cash amount.

The Sunday World understands the sum related to five individual unpaid toll penalties of €1,500 each.

Sources confirmed that three armed detectives were sent to monitor Roe’s release over fears he could be targeted as he left the jail.

“Roe would be deemed a major target for the Hutch faction in the ongoing feud,” a source told the Sunday World.

“For that reason he was immediately placed under lockdown in the prison’s C-Base after he arrived and was held in complete isolation overnight.”

Roe’s brief prison stint came after he was initially arrested on Tuesday and quizzed by Gardaí over alleged money-laundering offences linked to the Kinahan Cartel, in a major Garda crack-down targeting the cartel’s assets.

The Drimnagh man spent a number of hours being questioned at Crumlin Garda Station, before being released without charge at around 5.30pm on Tuesday. 

Following his release, Gardaí re-arrested him over the unpaid tolls and he was taken to Mountjoy.

Roe is one of a number of suspects being targeted by Gardaí in connection with a series of raids by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) in March, which resulted in 29 cars and SUVs and six motorbikes being seized from Active Car Sales, a business linked to Liam Byrne.

In March, the Sunday World exclusively revealed how a pub in the north inner-city - with links to Roe - was targeted in the raids.

Liam Roe was registered as a director of Alfie Byrne’s Bar and Entertainment Limited, based on Hill Street, two years ago, registering his occupation as a bar manager.

More arrests are expected in the CAB investigation in the coming weeks, with detectives focusing on the vehicles seized.

On Friday morning CAB officers targeted another Kinahan Cartel associate, a 25-year-old heroin dealer who has been flashing his wealth in the south inner city.

During the raid, Gardaí seized an Audi A3 car, €30,000 worth of jewellery, heroin worth €3,000 and €7,000 in cash.  The heroin dealer and his girlfriend were arrested and held for questioning at Kevin Street Garda Station. 

Gardaí recovered the haul at a flat in the Oliver Bond Flats complex during a planned operation that led to four properties being searched. 

A watch worth €15,000 that was owned by the suspect was among the €30,000 of jewellery that was seized. 

Raids were also carried out at three other locations – a flat in the Oliver Bond complex, a flat in nearby Dolphin House and a property at James’s Street. 

Documentation and drugs paraphernalia were also seized in the other properties. 

Sources said the man has been “heavily involved” in moving drugs and gathering cash for the cartel in recent months. 

He has been in charge of a network of street dealers who have been flooding the south inner city with drugs, particularly heroin. 

Despite his relatively tender years, the baby-faced criminal has already earned a reputation for violence and has involved in organised crime since his mid-teens.

He has amassed more than 60 convictions for a range of offences and acts as a cash collector and drug distributor for ‘Fat’ Freddie Thompson.

Superintendent Paul Murray said: “Included in those seizures we have recovered a Rolex watch, cocaine and a car, and the background work to those will be dominated by the Criminal Assets Bureau, where the assets will be looked at and confiscated if possible.”

Sources said the criminal targeted on Friday has been “doing the running” for notorious Crumlin criminals such as Liam Byrne, who answer directly to cartel boss Daniel Kinahan. 

“Without the likes of this individual, the cartel would cease to operate,” a senior source said. 

Tuesday’s arrest of Liam Roe is also being viewed as a major coup for Gardaí and their investigations into the running of the cartel.

Roe, who is a first cousin of ‘Fat’ Freddie Thompson, was present when another criminal cousin of his, David Byrne, was shot dead in the Regency Hotel in February as part of the capital’s deadly gangland feud.

Separately, on November 6 last, Roe survived a botched hit outside Dublin’s Red Cow Hotel.

Roe was taking a cigarette break outside the hotel, where he was attending a boxing fundraiser, when the attempted shooting happened.

This incident led to a major escalation of the underworld feud that has now claimed 10 lives.

Roe is extremely well known to Gardaí and he is considered to be a key associate of the Kinahan Cartel. 

He was arrested in 2007 over allegations that he threatened to kill a bouncer at a pub in Dame Street.

He was also fined €250 after an incident in 2009 for obstructing a Garda drugs search.

In 2012 Roe was given a four-month jail sentence after Gardaí raided his apartment and discovered stolen designer handbags worth nearly €9,000.

In November 2012 he failed in an attempt to get Gardaí to return two Rolex watches