pub shooting | 

How cartel gunman Alan Wilson got mixed up in a murky Republican murder plot

Wilson claims he was acting under orders from dissident republicans when he sourced the guns and vehicles used in the attempted assassination.

Gangland criminal Alan Wilson

Eamon Dillon

Gun-for-hire Alan Wilson had no personal motive for the murder plots he has been convicted of - he was doing it for the money.

He had nothing against the leader of the Real IRA Alan Ryan who was the target of the 2010 shooting at the Players’ Lounge pub which left three innocent men injured.

Instead, it was long-term career criminal Sean Hunt, also known as The Smuggler, who wanted Ryan dead.

Hunt, who died of natural causes on Christmas Eve two years ago, had gone to great lengths to set up the plot to get Ryan killed.

Before turning to his favoured gunmen in the Wilson family, according to some sources, The Smuggler made sure the dissident republicans in the North had no problems with Ryan being murdered.

Sean Hunt

This week Alan Wilson denied being the man seen on CCTV who emerged from a car at the Dublin pub with a gun in each hand.

While Ryan was the target it was three innocent men standing outside who were shot.

When a furious Ryan realised he had been the target of the planned attack he sent Daniel Gaynor to Hunt's animal feed store in Finglas, where Colm ‘Collie’ Owens was shot dead.

Hunt then retaliated using Alan’s cousin Keith Wilson to murder Gaynor in a revenge attack just a month later.

In 2011 Keith Wilson was found guilty of murdering Gaynor in front of his girlfriend and two children.

On the surface Hunt was a pigeon enthusiast with a successful bird-feed business in Ireland who spent much of his time living in Spain.

Alan Ryan

But he was also a cigarette smuggler and suspected to have been a transport and logistics expert with links to the Kinahan cartel.

He was a long-term CAB target although he successfully appealed a demand against him for nearly €2million in 2003.

This week Alan Wilson admitted at the Special Criminal Court to conspiracy to murder over the Players’ Lounge shooting while charges of attempted murder was dropped.

The key evidence against him had been a conversation he had in a van that had been bugged by the National Surveillance Unit in 2017 in which Wilson claimed to have been the gunmen.

While admitting to sourcing the guns and giving advice to others he denied being the gunman and told gardaí after his arrest he had been trying to impress the person he was with.

He said he had been acting under orders from dissident republicans when he sourced the guns and vehicles used in the attempted assassination.

Gangland criminal Alan Wilson was cleared in 2014 of murdering teen Marioara Rostas

At one point on the tape he can be heard saying people can survive even being shot in the head: “one of them, right in the forehead and five times in the body, it's amazing how the c***s pull through it, like".

The same garda operation in which the conversation was recorded also provided the evidence for his part in the 2017 plot to kill Gary Hanley for the Kinahan Cartel.

In that case his motivation for carrying out assassinations was heard loud and clear when he said: “if he survives we won't get paid".

A father-of-four Wilson is currently serving a six-year-sentence for the plot to kill Hanley and is due for release from prison next May.

He will be sentenced on 15 December for his role in the Players’ Lounge shooting.

Wilson was previously found not guilty of the murder of young Roma woman Marioara Rostas, who was killed in 2008.

Her remains were found wrapped in bin liners and duct tape in the Dublin Mountains in 2012.

Wilson, who had been serving a prison sentence for a meat-cleaver attack on another man at the time, went on trial for her murder but was acquitted by a jury in July 2014.

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