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Criminal history Notorious gangster and John Gilligan associate John 'The Coach' Traynor dies in England

The 73-year-old criminal passed away in Kent on Sunday where it's understood he had been receiving palliative care in a hospice for terminal cancer


 John Traynor

John Traynor

John Traynor

Notorious criminal John ‘The Coach’ Traynor has died at the age of 73.

The 73-year-old criminal and former associate of John Gilligan passed away in Kent on Sunday, where it's understood he had been receiving palliative care in a hospice for terminal cancer.

He is survived by his partner and four children.

Sources close to Traynor say that he will not be returned to Ireland for burial and will be cremated in the UK instead.

Funeral arrangements are now being made for the convicted fraudster turned drug trafficker, who fled to England after escaping charges connected to the murder of journalist Veronica Guerin and Gilligan’s drug empire.

The notorious gangster – described by gardaí as “extremely clever, manipulative and duplicitous” - was a lifelong friend of Gilligan’s and helped him to establish one of the most successful drug trafficking operations in Irish history.


John Traynor

John Traynor

John Traynor

He later became one of Veronica Guerin’s criminal sources and, while he has never been charged for the crime, he is believed to have been involved in the planning of her murder.

At the time of Guerin’s death in 1996, Traynor was seeking a High Court injunction to stop her publishing a story about his involvement in the drug trade.

Traynor has always denied having anything to do with her murder but cops have always believed that he was the one who tipped Gilligan off about her plans on the day of the assassination.

The coach first fled to Portugal after the assassination and later settled in Margate with his partner.

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Earlier this year, the Sunday World reported how Traynor's former associate Gilligan and his girlfriend had been spending time in an English seaside village which is just an hour’s drive from Margate.

Speaking on his death, a former garda who had investigated Traynor many times said this afternoon that The Coach “literally got away with murder.”

“He was a very clever and cunning gangster who played the game on both sides of the tracks – he was an informant and arch manipulator,."

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