Northern Ireland news

Man alleged to be the 'fixer' in the Kevin Lunney kidnap a career criminal

Cyril McGuinnesss, known as Dublin Jimmy, had been living in England after being connected to a series of ATM robberies along the border.

CYRIL McGuinness, known as Dublin Jimmy, was a career criminal whose activities at the head of a organised crime gang date back over 30 years.

McGuinness, who died yesterday during a police raid on his house in England, was widely believed to be the 'fixer' in the kidnapping of business man Kevin Lunney.

In a recent BBC Spotlight programme Mr Lunney told how he recalled the kidnappers making a call during his ordeal in which they reported back to someone referred to as "boss".

The man on the other end of that phone was widely believed to be Cyril McGuinness.

McGuinness, from Derrylin in Co Fermanagh before moving to Buxton in Derbyshire just over a year ago, was well known to police forces across Europe.

With more than 50 convictions, for various serious crimes, including smuggling, theft of plant machinery and illegal dumping, he was also thought to be behind the gang involved in a spate of border ATM machine thefts.

He was part of a group of organised criminals who stole 20 trucks and cranes in Belgium and the Netherlands in 2006/2007 and brought them to Ireland.

A European Arrest Warrant (EAW)was issued for his detention in 2008.

In April of that year, McGuinness was stopped by Serbian police near the Croatian border. When they realised he was subject to a Europe-wide warrant, he was taken to Belgrade from where he was extradited to Bruges.

He faced charges in Bruges, but fled the country after being granted bail.

A Belgian court convicted McGuinness in his absence and he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

He was arrested when he turned up at a court in Dublin in relation to the theft of a cash machine in 2011. The EAW was served and he was handed over to Belgian police and flown by military aircraft to the country.

Once released he returned to Fermanagh and back to a life of organised crime.

In 2007, McGuinness received a suspended sentence after he admitted 22 charges relating to the illegal transport of waste.

He pleaded guilty to transporting hundreds of tonnes of waste from the Republic, through Northern Ireland, before dumping it at various remote locations in Scotland.

He has also had links to republicans over the years including the Provisional IRA. He was suspected of providing stolen vehicles used in the organisation's bombing campaign in London.

While never a member he provided equipment used by the IRA.

Shortly after the IRA bombed Bishopsgate in April 1993, the Metropolitan Police issued a photofit of man thought to be McGuinness wanted as a suspect in the investigation.

In recent months he was suffering from a debilitating illness.

His sudden death during planned searches in a huge coordinated police operation involving hundreds of officers from An Garda Siochana, the PSNI and Derbyshire Police, closes down one line of enquiry in a complex and lengthy investigation into the kidnap and torture of Kevin Lunney.

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