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Kinahan gangster who helped plot James ‘Mago’ Gately hit gets extra month for having phone in cell

David Duffy had faced ‘severe discipline following the discovery in the form of the loss of privileges for 40 days

David Duffy

David Duffy

James 'Mago' Gately

Patrick O'ConnellSunday World

A key participant in a Kinahan cartel plot to murder Hutch gang ally James ‘Mago’ Gately has been sentenced to an additional month in prison after he was ‘caught red-handed’ with a phone in his prison cell.

David Duffy, of Greenfort Lawns, Clondalkin, Dublin, appeared before Portlaoise District Court last week, where he admitted having a mobile phone in his cell in Portlaoise Prison on November 19 last year.

A barrister for the 36-year-old said he had faced ‘severe discipline following the discovery in the form of the loss of privileges for 40 days.

Duffy is due for release in 2025, the barrister added.

Detective Garda Michael Esmonde said the defendant Duffy was found in possession of the phone on Landing 3C in Portlaoise Prison. He subsequently admitted possession.

Judge Andrew Cody told the sitting of Portlaoise District Court he would give Duffy credit for the plea. He sentenced him to one-month consecutive to a term imposed in 2021.

The Special Criminal Court heard last year how Duffy was a key link in the logistics chain in the botched cartel plot to kill Hutch gang ally Gately.Duffy booked flights for Estonian assassin Imre Arakas to come to Ireland after he was hired for the hit.

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Jailing Duffy for five years last July of 2021, Mr Justice Tony Hunt said that while Duffy had not participated in the surveillance of Mr Gately’s car, he was involved in booking flights for a formerEstonian separatist fighter turned internationalhitman, 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 gardaí before he could carry out the contracton 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.

James 'Mago' Gately

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.

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.​Hutch associate Gately had been warned in 2016 by gardaí of a threat to his life from criminals who believed him to be involved in the Regency Hotel murder of Kinahan Cartel associate David Byrne in February 2016.

Gately, who was believed by the Kinahans to be invovled in the Regency attack, 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 Clonshaugh Road, Dublin 17, on May 10, 2017.

Gately, who wore a bullet-proof vest, survived the shooting after sustaining injuries to his upper chest and neck.

Caolan Smyth was sentenced to 20 years for that hit attempt in February of last year and shouted “five World Cups and I’ll be out” at his sentence hearing.


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