The distraught family of an Irish teenager hacked to pieces as part of a brutal turf war have said they won’t bury him until his missing torso is found.
Keane Mulready-Woods’ torso is yet to be located after the 17-year-old was barbarically decapitated and chopped up in Drogheda on January 12.
A relative of the teen told the Irish Mirror that they ‘just want to lay him to rest,’ with the gardai appealing for further information last night.
Drogheda Superintendent Andrew Watters said: ‘I wish to strongly appeal to anyone with any information, particularly those directly involved in this incident, to seriously examine their conscience and come forward with any information they have to help us discover the remaining parts of Keane’s body.’
Keane Mulready-Woods’ torso is yet to be located after the 17-year-old was barbarically decapitated and chopped up in Drogehda on January 12
He told RTE: ‘The family are extremely traumatised and shocked by this horrendous incident, and that’s not helped by the fact that there are parts of Keane’s body that have not been located.’
He also relayed the Mulready-Woods family’s request that people not circulate unverified graphic images purporting to show their son.
Mulready-Woods was abducted from the streets of Drogheda on January 12 and taken to a pebble dash home, where he was tortured and murdered.
His head was severed, his body dismembered and a sports bag containing some of his limbs dumped on a north Dublin street, only to be discovered by children.
The MailOnline previously revealed that the two factions currently at war with each other connected to the violence were originally part of the same gang.
A police search conducted earlier this month in parkland in Drogheda. Mulready-Woods’ head was severed, his body dismembered and a sports bag containing some of his limbs dumped on a north Dublin street, only to be discovered by children
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (centre left) and Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin (centre right) during a rally in Drogheda, Co. Louth, to voice opposition to drug-related violence on Saturday
Initially, one criminal outfit ran drugs in and out of the town and were overseen by a notorious traveller family headed by Owen Maguire who was linked to a crime kingpin in the north of Dublin called ‘Mr Big’.
Two years ago, four of the gang decided to break away in Drogheda to avoid having to hand over a cut of the drug money they were making.
These four include two notorious underworld brothers, a gangster from north Dublin and a 24-year-old Drogheda-based criminal now seen as the chief suspect in the Mulready-Woods murder.
They are also widely believed to have been behind an attempted hit on Owen Maguire in July 2018 when gunmen burst into his home and fired six shots into his body.
Miraculously he survived but was left paralysed in a wheelchair.
The attempt on his life lit the blue touch paper and sparked the current spate of violence.
Mulready-Woods had links to the Maguire gang.
Three people, including Mulready-Woods, have been killed as part of a feud between rival gangs in Drogheda, which is located between Dublin and Belfast
A relative of the teen said that they ‘just want to lay him to rest,’ as the gardai appealed for further information last night
A source told MailOnline: ‘The savagery of this latest killing is a sickening development and marks a new low for the Drogheda feud.
‘This is something straight off the streets of Mexico or Columbia not one of the oldest towns in Ireland.
‘But this is the problem. The gangsters today are younger – aged in their mid-20s and 30s – and unlike in the past they consume their own product and that makes them dangerously unstable.
‘Cocaine use in Drogheda is rampant and it’s been getting steadily worse over the years – even in more rural areas out towards the coast.’
Drogheda has around 41,000 inhabitants making it the 11th largest settlement in Ireland.
Traditionally the docks have provided much of the employment but more recently it has become a tech and manufacturing hub with craft breweries also springing up in the town.
Its close proximity to Dublin, means that numerous families from the capital have been drawn there over the last 30 years to settle in more affordable housing.
‘The town has a population of more than 40,000 people which makes it the largest in Ireland so there is major money to be made in drugs here.’
There has been shock across the UK and the Republic since the boy’s brutal death was discovered earlier this month and exposed a two-year battle of tit-for-tat shootings between rival gangs in the town of Drogheda, 30 miles north of the Irish capital
The men suspected of murdering Mulready-Woods were thought to have been planning to drop his severed head on Price’s doorstep as a warning
Another source added: ‘The Maguires had always been at the top of the food chain but the breakaway group began to realise that without them in the way, they could start making even more serious money.
‘Added to that was a general distrust of the Maguire family because they were from the travelling community. There was a feeling of why do they have to be involved? Get rid of them and we’ve got the keys to the city!
‘A split formed with the four Drogheda criminals being among the major players who peeled away to set up their own operations. Soon afterwards Maguire was gunned down and there’s no mystery as to who was probably behind it.’
The well-placed source told MailOnline that the ‘psychopath’ moniker had been given to the North Dublin gangster by the Gardai and that he was thought to be linked to several other killings.
His 24-year-old co-gang member was cleared last year of attempted murder, even though the alleged victim survived being stabbed 28-times and left in the boot of a car which was rolled into a canal.
However, he is now in custody facing charges related to yet another crime.
In addition, the Drogheda brothers are facing charges of abducting and assaulting a man.
Our source added: ‘These are men prone to heavy, heavy violence and what is particularly worrying are the depths they are prepared to sink to in order to intimidate their rivals.’
What started out as a battle over the drugs trade has turned increasingly bitter and personal – with much of the feud being played out on social media.
Following the shooting of Maguire in 2018 a video circulated on the internet was said to show one of the Drogheda gang mocking and taunting the gang boss on the phone – calling him a ‘cripple’ and asking him to go for a ‘walk’.
Victim Keane Mulready-Woods who was murdered and decapitated earlier this month
Last February Maguire’s brother Brendan was shot and wounded after walking out of a toy shop.
In retaliation, 30-year-old Keith Branigan, a close friend of the Drogheda group, was shot dead in front of children at a caravan park in Clogerhead, eight miles from Drogheda in August 2019.
Three months later, Richard Carberry, a relation of the North Dublin gangster, was shot dead outside his home, having survived an earlier shooting in March.
According to rumours swirling around Drogheda, Mulready-Woods had possibly hidden the gun used in the first, failed attack on Carberry. Whether true or not it seems to have sealed his fate.
The noose tightened last December, when the North Dublin gangster was released from prison after being cleared of attempted murder and assault.
He is believed to have masterminded the death of Mulready-Woods to avenge the killing of Mr Branigan.
Ged Nash, a Drogheda politician and Labour senator, believes tougher controls over the warring gangs are needed.
He said: ‘The brutal and graphic nature of this latest killing is completely unacceptable and really an attack on public authority and democracy.
‘These gangs – and this is echoed by the Garda – seem to be taking their cue from South American drug cartels in the level of violence they are prepared to use.
‘They feel as though they can do what they want, when they want all the while promoting themselves on social media because they have zero fears of being caught.
‘What has ramped up the level of violence is that this feud has become increasingly personal. Both sides absolutely despise one another.’