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Grieving dad Father of slain New IRA man Michael Barr speaks of his family's heartbreak and life after the killing

As second man jailed for mickey's murder, grieving dad left in a rage

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Colly Barr, father of murder victim Michael Barr

Colly Barr, father of murder victim Michael Barr

Colm Lenghan/Pacemaker Press

Colly Barr, father of murder victim Michael Barr

The father of slain New IRA man Michael Barr says he is a broken and angry man.

Just days after a second man was jailed for his son's brutal murder, Collie Barr spoke of his family's heartbreak and life after the killing.

In a sometimes emotional and angry interview he relived the events surrounding the killing of his son Mickey (35) in April, 2016 on the orders of the ruthless, Dublin-based, Kinahan Cartel.

The Strabane man was shot seven times, five in the head, as he worked in The Sunset House, a Dublin bar he had recently leased.

Barr had been accused of being involved in the Regency Hotel shooting that resulted in the death of Kinahan gang member David Byrne - yet his devastated father insists they shot an innocent man.

"Yea, he was in the (New) IRA and all that shite but he had nothing to do with what happened in that hotel. He was shot because he knew that b****rd Kevin Murray.

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Michael Barr was killed at Sunset House pub in Dublin's North inner City in 2016.

Michael Barr was killed at Sunset House pub in Dublin's North inner City in 2016.

Colm Lenghan/Pacemaker Press

Michael Barr was killed at Sunset House pub in Dublin's North inner City in 2016.

"Flatcap. He knew him, they were both from Strabane, but he was not involved with him, he had nothing to do with it," Collie Barr told the Sunday World.

Struggles

"My son was many things but he was not that. He was a Jack the lad, I know he was in the IRA but he was just about to walk away from it all, he told me that, but he never got the chance to turn his back on all that sh*te," the 61-year-old Tyrone man said.

Father-of-four Collie struggles every day knowing the details of his son's last minutes and says he is furious his grandkids will grow up without their dad.

"Every day the first thing I do is look at his picture and I still hear his voice as clear, all the time. He rang me twice that day, I still remember him talking.

"It is f**king heartbreaking, I miss him so much because he was a good son, I loved him. He was a great father and God he was funny, he made me laugh, I miss that. There's not much to laugh or smile about now.

"He was a great joiner and he was never out of work, he would finish up in Dublin on a Friday and bring the wee'ans up here every Saturday and stay the night. I would go get his other kids who live here and we would all spend time together.

"His kids were everything to him, they wanted for nothing now all the five of them want is their father," he said, his pain etched across his face.

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Garda forensics outside The Sunset House bar in Dublin after the shooting in 2016.

Garda forensics outside The Sunset House bar in Dublin after the shooting in 2016.

PA

Garda forensics outside The Sunset House bar in Dublin after the shooting in 2016.

The grieving grandfather knows who killed his son and he knows the Kinahan mob is responsible. He wants the crime bosses to rot in hell.

"Extraditing the Kinahans is the best for Ireland, it is the best for our children's futures. They think they can escape justice, maybe they can in this world but what about the next world, they can't escape that. I hope they rot.

"It's crazy what money and drugs will do to people. I have seen pictures of women associated with the Hutchs and Kinahans wearing fur coats and fancy watches but look around you what do I have? Nothing.

"The sofa you are sitting on was £80 from a charity shop. I lost my son, I lost my life too and those bastards are responsible for all of that.

Brutality

"I will never forgive them or understand how the f**k they get away with it. How come the men who hand over the money to these people to kill are never caught, I want to know that too," he said furiously.

Collie can't comprehend the world of the Kinahans and the Hutchs, the greed and the brutality.

"How many lives have to be lost just so you can wear a Rolex watch? How can you take money to kill, how can you take money off someone to go and watch someone else die? What type of person does that, then goes off to have a great time off their heads on drink and drugs, laughing and joking."

Liverpool native David Hunter was jailed for life by the non-jury Special Criminal Court in Dublin on Monday for the Kinahan Cartel murder of dissident Mickey Barr.

"David Hunter, that evil f**ker, was on a coke-fuelled weekend bender when he came to kill my son. Every time I hear of a shooting in Dublin I think of the parents and the families, what it will do to them and what it is still doing to us now.

"Look at Monday, what we had to go through again when Hunter was found guilty, it will never end but people like that don't care. They just don't know just how f**king heartbreaking it is," he said.

In a victim impact statement, Barr's sister Noeleen said her brother's five children would have to live with the trauma of knowing their father was gunned down in his place of work "on the orders of others who pay fools to murder human beings".

Hunter is the second man to be found guilty of murdering dissident republican Barr. In January 2018, Eamon Cumberton (32), of Mountjoy Street, Dublin 7, was also convicted of murdering the Tyrone native.

Justice

While Collie is relieved two men have been found guilty he believes there is another one who has so far escaped justice.

"One more person is wanted and the guards say the case is still open and ongoing. I still have so many questions but one thing I know for sure is who was the spotter that day, Johnny Keogh, who knew my son from around here.

"But look what has happened there, to him, more misery. He is serving life, his brother was killed and as for Edward Cumberton, he lost his brother. Is all the money and the flash cars worth that?" he asked.

Barr's sister Noeleen said: "On April 25, 2016, Michael's life and future was brutally taken.

"To see the raw pain etched on my parents' faces...to hear Michael's little boy asking if his daddy will ever wake up will haunt me forever," she revealed.

Sunday World


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