It is suspected the human limbs found dumped in a sports bag in a North Dublin housing estate could belong to a 17-year-old from Drogheda, Co Louth, who has not been seen in several days.
The gruesome discovery was made by youths at Moatview Gardens in Coolock at 10pm on Monday night.
Sinn Fein TD Denise Mitchell described the barbaric find as “distressing and horrific”.
She said: “The people of Coolock and the wider Dublin Bay North area have been subjected to fear and intimidation by these drug gangs for too long, but this is a particularly grisly chapter.
“This incident really drives home the need for greater Garda resources in the area. Gardai in Coolock station are overstretched as it is. How many more deaths and brutal incidents such as this must be inflicted upon local residents until they get the help they need?”
Gardai are trying to identify the victim and have appealed to families with missing loved ones to get in touch.
The remains were being examined last night at the city morgue.
A head and torso have still not been found, leading to fears the dismemberment is a deliberate terror tactic rather than an attempt to get rid of the body.
Sources claim feuding gangs had issued a threat to kill and “chop up” rival members in recent days.
One line of inquiry centres on a naive teenager linked to one of the feuding drugs mobs in Drogheda who have been waging a violent turf war in recent months.
The youth was said to have contacts with the faction behind an attempted hit in the town on Monday which left an innocent taxi driver injured.
The intended target was a leading member of one of the gangs who escaped unhurt and it is feared his mob could have carried out the abduction and murder of the teenager.
Relatives and friends of the missing youth have been desperately trying to contact him for a number of days and were still hoping he would be found safe.
Detectives are also probing possible links between the victim and drug gangs in Coolock – the stronghold of the mob boss dubbed “Mr Big”.
The human remains – believed to be legs and an arm – were thrown from a car just metres from the scene of the 2018 gangland murder of Ken Finn.
The 36-year-old was a hitman for Mr Big and was a suspect in the shooting dead of Real IRA chief Alan Ryan. Finn’s murder sparked a feud between Mr Big and a notoriously violent northside criminal who has just recently been freed from prison.
Gardai feared a surge in violence following the thug’s release as he vowed revenge for the recent killing of his associate Richie Carberry, 39, who was gunned down in Bettystown, Co Meath, in November.
Mr Big’s gang were suspects for ordering that killing. But sources say it may have been carried out by members of one of the feuding Drogheda gangs – an indication of the blurred lines and murky links between the mobs and different feuds.
Gardai are understood to be keeping an open mind on the possible identity of the victim and the motive behind the killing.
Officers combed a green area beside the road where the remains were dumped.
Forensic experts and officers from the Garda Technical Bureau also examined the body parts under the cover of a blue tent while locals watched on.
Independent Left Councillor John Lyons told the Irish Mirror: “There’s a feeling there would be more done if this was happening in Castleknock and not Coolock.
“There have been four murders all only minutes walk from where this happened.
“People are fearful, they are rightly fearful and keeping their heads down. But sadly people are not surprised.”
At the moment gardai were removing the remains of the victim on a trolley from a hastily erected tent to the back of an ambulance, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar signalled the start of a General Election campaign. But one local woman said: “They [politicians] better not call here, I won’t be polite.
“There are lovely people on this road but these people come in from outside the area, they are coming in burning cars the whole time.
“The car was being chased and they dumped the bag. Young people were just playing there and had a look as you would into a bag, they maybe thought there’d be money in it.
“They must have got some shock. I’m glad I was not around. To think of the poor mother of whoever it is. It is shocking. Disgusting.”
Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan described the killing as a depraved act of violence and extended his sympathy to the family of the victim. He assured local people their concerns about violent crime are being taken
A Garda statement said: “Gardai are seeking any persons who have concerns for a loved one who they have not heard from in the last number of days to contact them at Coolock Garda station.
“Gardai continue to identify the human body parts with the assistance of Forensic Science Ireland.”
Officers are keen to hear from anyone who may have been in the Moatview Gardens/Drive area of Coolock or adjoining roads between 9.30m and 10pm on Monday.
Road users with dash cam footage which may assist the investigation are also urged to get in touch.
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