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in the clear Gardai will not be launching criminal probe into Martin 'The Viper' Foley over €10k debt dispute

Officers visited and spoke with the businessman on two separate occasions in the wake of the video going viral on the internet.

Martin 'the Viper' Foley is in the clear following Garda enquiries into a video where he told a businessman to 'Google me' as he tried to collect a disputed €10k debt.

The former gangland criminal turned debt-collector made the comment as he visited a taxi business in Ballyfermot, in south-west Dublin on March 4.

He demanded the owner pay the disputed debt to a former business partner.

The dispute over the alleged €10,000 debt, which saw the 70-year-old and a colleague from 'Viper Debt Collection Ltd' call to the man's premises, arose after the man's former partner exited their business.

The businessman is understood to maintain he has already paid his former partner €35,000 and believes no further debts arise.

It is understood, in the wake of Foley telling the man to 'Google me', the businessman did exactly that and was alarmed to learn of Foley's gangland past.


Martin ‘The Viper’ Foley

Martin ‘The Viper’ Foley

Martin ‘The Viper’ Foley

Officers from Ballyfermot Garda Station visited and spoke with the businessman on two separate occasions in the wake of the video going viral on the internet.

However, he was not asked to give a formal statement in relation to the incident.

But in a statement to the Sunday World, gardaí said yesterday that the contents of the video do not at this stage merit criminal investigation.

"Gardaí have received reports of a dispute over business debt that is reported to have occurred at a commercial premises in Ballyfermot on 04/03/2021," the statement read.

"At this time this is being treated as a civil matter and no offences have been recorded. Enquiries are ongoing."

In the viral video, first shown on sundayworld.com, Foley can be heard telling the businessman to: "Google me and see who I am."

Addressing the alleged debt, Foley tells the businessman: "He's saying you owe him €10,000.


Foley has been the target of assassination attempts

Foley has been the target of assassination attempts

Foley has been the target of assassination attempts

"There is proof there. There's text messages."

He continues: "If this goes to court, the court proceedings will outweigh the debt and you'll still have to pay it.

"You'll go to court? So you're saying you're not paying him, are you?"

The businessman responds: "No, I'm not paying him. If he proves it to me, I'll pay him. He hasn't given me the money. I've paid him everything that I owe him. I gave him two cars; I gave him everything that I owed him. I don't owe him this."

Foley then dismisses the businessman and says that he is "acting the bo****ks".

When the businessman mentions that he may get the gardaí involved, Foley interrupts him saying: "There's no need to call the cops. I have no need to call the police. Google me and see who I am."

Although no longer listed as a director, the video shows how Foley continues to involve himself in his debt collection company, Viper Debt Recovery and Repossession Agency.

Sources say that he has been spotted in Co. Kildare in recent times trying to retrieve a debt against a businessman in the locality.

Last June, a businessman claimed before the High Court that a former developer is using the firm of criminal Martin 'the Viper' Foley to try to collect a disputed debt from him of more than €100,000.

Foley is one of Ireland's most notorious criminals and has more than 40 convictions, including for assault, robbery and possession of threatening weapons, but has not been charged with a criminal offence for many years.

Foley has links to both factions in the brutal Hutch/Kinahan feud and has known senior players in the rival mobs for decades.

In the aftermath of the Regency Hotel bloodbath in 2016, it was reported that Foley was being targeted by the Kinahan mob over his friendship with Gerry 'the Monk' Hutch.

However, there have been no major issues with Foley since then and no attempts to murder him.

The Viper' was ordered to pay €738,449 in tax, interest and penalties after losing a Supreme Court appeal against a Criminal Assets Bureau tax bill in February of last year.

The interest and penalties incurred over the unpaid tax bill more than trebled the amount initially owed.

Foley came to prominence in the 1980s when he was a member of the gang which was led by slain mobster Martin 'the General' Cahill and as a spokesman for a gang which clashed with the Concerned Parents anti-drug movement.

He was kidnapped by the IRA in 1984 but was freed after a shoot-out between the terrorists and gardaí in the Phoenix Park.

Foley's life has been under threat since the late 1980s with different criminal enterprises intent on murdering him.

In the last major attack on his life, he was shot numerous times in broad daylight in Dublin in January 2008 by the Kinahan cartel.

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