• Sat. Oct 1st, 2022

James ‘Mago’ Gately murder plotter investigated after cellphone found in jail

ByCindy J. Daddario

Mar 14, 2022

A key participant in a Kinahan Cartel plot against Hutch gang ally James “Mago” Gately is being investigated after he was “caught red-handed” with a phone in his jail cell.

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

The seizure could result in up to two years for Duffy on top of the five-year sentence he is already serving for the conspiracy to kill Gately.

The Special Criminal Court heard last year how Duffy (34) was a key link in the supply chain in the cartel’s failed plot to assassinate Hutch gang ally Gately.

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

Jailing Duffy for five years last July, Judge Tony Hunt said that while Duffy had not been directly involved 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 repeatedly heard that Arakas (63) was brought to Ireland on April 3, 2017 to target Gately but was intercepted by Gardai before he could execute the contract on the victim’s life.

The judge said Duffy had been involved in booking flights to and from the UK for the organization before the planned attempt and provided a vehicle for the gang’s use.

The judge said that Duffy was involved in a planned fingerprint cleaning of a car, that he was in possession of a package of SIM cards intended for use in cell phones and that he was in contact ” frequent” with the business manager of the foiled plan.

Judge Hunt said Duffy had also obtained vehicle tracking devices, one of which had been attached to Mr Gately’s car in Belfast.

The judge said Duffy’s role, however, was “limited to logistics” and he had only had one significant prior conviction.

Gately was then the victim of another attempted murder, when he was shot multiple times while sitting in his car at a petrol station on Clonashaugh Road, Dublin 17, on May 10, 2017.

Gately, who was warned by Gardai of a threat to his life, was wearing a bulletproof vest and survived the shooting after sustaining injuries to his upper chest and neck.

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