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Cell Phone James 'Mago' Gately murder plotter probe after mobile phone found in prison

David Duffy had the phone seized from him in his cell on C-Block in Portlaoise late last year and it was handed over to gardai for analysis

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David ‘Blinky’ Duffy

David ‘Blinky’ Duffy

David ‘Blinky’ Duffy

A key participant in a Kinahan cartel plot against Hutch gang ally James 'Mago' Gately is under investigation after he was 'caught red-handed' with a phone in his prison cell.

Sources have confirmed to the Sunday World that David Duffy had the phone seized from him in his cell on C-Block in Portlaoise late last year and it was handed over to gardai for analysis.

The seizure could result in Duffy having up to two years added to the five-year sentence he is already serving over the plot to kill Gately.

The Special Criminal Court heard last year how Duffy (34) was a key link in the logistics chain in the botched cartel plot to murder Hutch gang ally Gately.

Duffy booked flights for international assassin Imre Arakas to come to Ireland after he was hired for the hit.

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James 'Mago' Gately

James 'Mago' Gately

James 'Mago' Gately

Jailing Duffy for five years last July, Mr Justice Tony Hunt said that while Duffy had not directly participated in the surveillance of Mr Gately's car, he was involved in booking flights for a former Estonian separatist fighter turned international hitman, Imre Arakas, to come to Ireland.

The court has heard on previous occasions that Arakas (63) was brought to Ireland on April 3, 2017, to target Gately but was intercepted by gardai before he could carry out the contract on the victim's life.

The judge said that Duffy had been involved in booking flights to and from the UK for the organisation ahead of the planned attempt and sourced a vehicle for use by the gang.

The judge said that Duffy was involved in the planned cleaning of a car of fingerprints, that he was in possession of a pack of SIM cards intended for use in burner phones and that he was in "frequent" contact with the director of activities in the foiled plan.

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Imre Arkas

Imre Arkas

Imre Arkas

 

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Mr Justice Hunt said that Duffy also sourced tracker devices for vehicles, one of which had been attached to Mr Gately's car in Belfast.

The judge said Duffy's role was, however, "limited to logistics" and that he had only one previous conviction of any significance.

Gately was later the victim of another attempted murder, when he was shot multiple times as he sat in his car at a filling station on the Clonashaugh Road, Dublin 17, on May 10, 2017.

Gately, who was warned by gardai of a threat to his life, wore a bullet-proof vest and survived the shooting after sustaining injuries to his upper chest and neck.

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