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In hiding Close associate of ‘Mr Flashy’ blamed for being shooter in gangland murder

It is understood that the murder suspect who is aged in his early 20s is in hiding today after detectives yesterday searched a property connected to him.

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Pictured: James Whelan

Pictured: James Whelan

Pictured: James Whelan

The gangland gun murder of James Whelan is being blamed by his associates on a very close junior associate of the drug dealer nicknamed ‘Mr Flashy’, sundayworld.com can reveal.

It is understood that the murder suspect who is aged in his early 20s is in hiding today after detectives yesterday searched a property connected to him.

Tensions remain high in the troubled north Dublin suburb of Finglas after Whelan (29) was shot dead in the Deanstown Avenue area at around 4.30am on Sunday morning.

Drug dealer Whelan was once a key member of the ‘Mr Flashy’ crime network but in recent times that he had been a senior player in a gang of young dealers using electric bikes and electric scooters to deal crack cocaine and cannabis in the northside suburb.

This brought him into direct confrontation with ‘Mr Flashy’ (27) and his gang and Whelan had been subjected to threats and taunts on social media in the months before he was murdered after a number of escalating violent feud incidents in Finglas.

“What his associates are claiming is that Whelan and at least one other criminal were in the Deanstown area on Sunday morning to shoot up a house or worse,” a local source said.

“But they were spotted by Mr Flashy’s close younger associate on a CCTV system and he fired a number of shots at them indiscriminately and at least one of these fatally hit Whelan in the chest.

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The shooting occurred in the early hours of Sunday (Niall Carson/PA)

The shooting occurred in the early hours of Sunday (Niall Carson/PA)

The shooting occurred in the early hours of Sunday (Niall Carson/PA)

“There is also talk that Whelan returned fire in the course of this incident,” the source added.

The scene of the murder in Finglas remains sealed off this afternoon and no arrests have yet been made.

Sources say that Whelan was making an “absolute fortune” from drug dealing in recent times and had “put a six figure” bounty on the head of his one time pal but now his hated enemy ‘Mr Flashy.’

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It is believed two gun attacks on properties in the area within 24 hours over the weekend are also linked to the dispute.

On Friday night, an innocent relative of Whelan had shots fired at their home while on Saturday afternoon his associates are suspected of targeting a house in the Deanstown area.

A number of shots were fired at the property, damaging the windows and door but no injuries were reported.

All this inflamed tensions in a gangland feud that has spiralled out of control since January.

Whelan had been one of the main antagonists in this feud and his associates are suspected assaulting a close associate of ‘Mr Flashy’ and stole a high-end watch from him on a Dublin Bus which in turn led to a brutal assault on a juvenile.

This has led to a number of tit-for-tat incidents including a grenade attack carried out by Whelan’s associates where an innocent family had a lucky escape when a bomb believed to be a grenade was thrown at their home instead of the intended property.

The bungling gangsters targeted the wrong house and the suspected grenade exploded in the back garden of the property causing damage to a door and a window and leaving “a large hole in the ground.”

Whelan’s younger associates are also the chief suspects for an incident where a 22-year-old victim was forced into a car in the Finglas area by a group of men who were armed with a hammer.

Footage of the incident shared on social media showed the group dragging the man into a people carrier on the Finglas Road before the vehicle speeds off.

The victim suffered serious injuries and was targeted because his associates were blamed for an earlier vicious feud assault.

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