'Scumbag who murdered our son and his girlfriend should be kept in jail like a caged animal'
A heartbroken family of a man feared dead believe there will be more violence if the main suspect in their son's disappearance is released on bail.
William 'Willie' Maughan (34) and his Latvian girlfriend Anna Varslavane (21) are believed to have been murdered. They were last seen in April 2015 around Gormanston, Co Meath.
The Herald can today reveal the man who gardai believe is responsible for their disappearance - a violent north-Dublin gang leader - could be on the streets in weeks if his bail application succeeds.
Helen and Joe Maughan
William's devastated father Joseph and mother Helen last night pleaded for the courts to refuse the criminal's bail application when it is heard in the coming weeks.
"He's a scumbag ... my son was murdered when this man was out on bail last year. He was let out to murder my son and his girlfriend," Joseph said.
"Will he do the same again if he is let out on bail?
"I hope the courts will see what this man can do if he is released on bail.
"The judges should keep him in [custody] like a caged animal, because that it what he is.
"If he gets out on bail it would be a laughing stock."
William and Anna were last seen alive on April 14 last year.
William's parents believe the young couple were targeted because their son had information about a gangland murder.
Gardai believe the man who ordered their deaths is a violent gang boss who operates in north Co Dublin, Meath and Louth.
The criminal - who cannot be named for legal reasons - is also one of the chief suspects in the murder of Benny Whitehouse. The mobster was arrested in connection with the murder of Whitehouse, who was shot dead on Clonard Street, Balbriggan, on September 25, 2014.
The Maughan family said they have "great faith in God and the gardai" and believe their son's killers will be brought to justice.
"I pray every night for the gardai that they get the answers that will lead to my son's killers being locked up," said Joseph.
"I know they will, but it will take time. I have great faith in them.
"God and the gardai won't let me down."
The missing couple were planning on moving back to the family home in west Dublin on the day they went missing.
Gardai have searched various places around Gormanston - including a quarry - but no remains have been found.
Ms Maughan pleaded for anybody with information to come forward so she can lay her son and his girlfriend to rest.
"I know my son is dead," said Helen.
"I hope that somebody with information about his death will come forward so we can give him a final resting place.
"I hope they pick up the phone to the gardai or a priest and anonymously tell them where the bodies are, or any information they have.
"Then I can bury my child and that will give us closure."