Christy Kinahan Snr orders Sean McGovern probe as 'mole' suspicions run high

'Dapper Don' Christy Kinahan Snr believes that he has an informant very close to his son Daniel and has called for a full investigation into McGovern

Nicola Tallant

Murder accused Sean McGovern is facing the ultimate double jeopardy with an internal probe in the paranoid Kinahan organisation focusing on the inner circle of top associates.

'Dapper Don' Christy Kinahan Snr has declared that no Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) operative is embedded in his top tier, but he does believe that he has an informant very close to his son Daniel and has called for a full investigation into McGovern.

The Dubliner, who was once a key part of the Byrne Organised Crime Group and for years ran the Kinahan's Irish operation, moved to Dubai full-time following the murder of Noel 'Duck Egg' Kirwan in December 2016.

Since then, he has been Daniel Kinahan's most senior and trusted sidekick and was named during the US sanctions as being wanted for murder and directing and participating in an organised criminal group. Gardai stated on April 12 this year that the High Court had issued a European Arrest Warrant for him.

Senior sources close to the Kinahan organisation say that following the announcement of sanctions and $5 million rewards for information leading to the capture of Kinahan and his sons Daniel and Christopher Jnr, it was believed that an undercover DEA officer had infiltrated the Irish mafia.

But Kinahan Senior, known for his use of counter surveillance, has concluded that is not the case but that one of his own has been feeding authorities with highly sensitive information relating to money laundering and other activities of the group.

Bernard Clancy, a convicted drug dealer and childhood friend of Daniel's, has been deemed too loyal and too stupid to cut any deal with law enforcement, while Ian Dixon is a blood relative of Kinahan's former wife Jean Boylan, the mother of his two sons.

McGovern, who became very close to Daniel following the attack at the Regency Hotel and who was injured during the weigh-in shootout, has now come under suspicion from the Dapper Don despite the warrant for his arrest being issued by Irish authorities.

"You have to realise that the paranoia is immense and that they have no doubt but they have an informant in the ranks," the source said.

"They are trying to work out who could have had the information that police are now in possession of relating to their business dealings, and who could have something to gain from passing that on.

"While the warrant has been issued by the Irish High Court, Kinahan believes that anyone can cut a deal with the Americans and that they can make any charge go away. Whether or not that is the case doesn't matter, that is what he believes and he is convinced that he has an informant at the very top."

Given the Kinahan organisation has for years worked under a cell structure with no two units knowing what the other is doing, few have an overall knowledge of the set-up and operation of the $1 billion drug and weapons corporation.

The Dapper Don has carefully chosen his own trusted business partners but has long questioned many of those that surround son Daniel, particularly some of the Dublin criminals he has hand-picked over the years for key roles in management.

Sources say he never trusted the Byrne organisation nor the family patriarch James 'Jaws' Byrne. And while Thomas 'Bomber' Kavanagh rose to become the Kinahans' number one operative in the UK and Ireland, his demise and vast losses has also concerned the Dapper Don.

Chaos has reigned within the Kinahan organisation since the shock announcement of sanctions in April against the family and their key personnel Clancy, McGovern, Dixon and enforcer Johnny Morrissey.

Debts are being called in as many try to shore up what money they can, and a large number of logistic and middle managers are returning to Spain to try to tidy up their affairs.

The ransom on the heads of the three Kinahans have also become particularly attractive to those who believe they will be facing heavy sentences in the near future as the organisation collapses.

The whereabouts of Kinahan and his sons are unknown but locations rumoured include Oman, Myanmar and Pakistan, where they had planned safe routes should things turn sour in the United Arab Emirates.

Despite openly living in Dubai for six years, McGovern has yet to be picked up by police on foot of the extradition warrant issued more than a month ago.

His girlfriend Anita Freeman and children relocated to the Emirates after he fled Ireland in the wake of the Kirwan murder.

Gardai suspect he had a role in organising a number of other feud murders including that of Noel Duggan, shot dead in his car in the driveway of his home in Ratoath in March 2016.

Duggan was a friend of Gerry Hutch and a known cigarette smuggler, but while he had nothing to do with the Regency Hotel attack, he was seen as an easy target in a brutal and uneven gang war which followed.

McGovern's former home at Kildare Road in Crumlin was seized as part of CAB's Proceeds of Crime case against the Byrne organisation.

Before the Bureau was handed the keys of the house its fixtures and fittings, including the kitchen and bathrooms, were ripped out.

McGovern, known as 'Macker', has been helping Daniel Kinahan with his business ventures while resident in the Emirates.

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