Hotel shooting victim named locally as David Byrne

David Byrne
David Byrne

The man shot dead in a brutal broad daylight attack in a Dublin hotel has been named locally as David Byrne, a close associate of the Christy Kinahan mob.

David Byrne, originally from Raleigh Square in Crumlin, was at the very top of the Kinahan chain in Ireland because of the millions they were making transporting drugs from Spain.

It is understood that he and his brother Liam were also hugely successful at laundering money through the used car industry and their key contacts in Birmingham.

Liam and David were well-known for driving high-end cars and regularly change their motors, but they stand out on the streets of Dublin and it was known that they were disliked and mistrusted within their own mob. 

David Byrne had no major convictions.

Byrne is also a first cousin of 'Fat' Freddie Thompson.

Despite being a senior lieutenant in the Kinahan gang, Byrne was thought to be a target following the slaying of Gary Hutch in Spain last year.

In 2007, Graham 'The Wig' Whelan and Byrne, were quizzed in connection with the murder of Rattigan hitman Gary Bryan.

In September 2006, killer Bryan was gunned down minutes after Whelan drove by him on Bunting Road in Walkinstown in Dublin’s south city.

In a statement given to gardai, Bryan’s girlfriend had claimed her partner had told her he was concerned after he had spotted The Wig driving past him.

Bryan’s girlfriend, Valerie White, said he told her: “There’s a fella that’s going to make a phone call. I’ve got to get out of here.”

Minutes later, Bryan was shot six times by a gunman who pumped three shots into his head as he lay dying on the ground.

While he was in custody, David Byrne refused to answer any questions about the murder or his relationship with Whelan.

During his detention, Byrne gave Sergeant Andrew Duncan newspapers and asked him to give them to Whelan, who was being quizzed in an adjoining cell in Crumlin Garda Station.

When Sergeant Duncan examined the newspapers he found a hand written message saying: “Loose lips sink ships.”

Gardai believe Byrne was warning Whelan not to co-operate with the police.

Both men were released without charge after 48 hours.