REVEALED: The 18 gangs who control Ireland’s prisons

Mountjoy Confinement

The notorious prison houses dangerous gangland figures such as Thomas Hinchon, Craig Cadaverous and Barry Doyle.

Thomas Hinchon

Craig White

Barry Doyle

Controls have to keep track of multiple factions that are operating within Mountjoy’s prominent stone walls but the jail is largely controlled by four main outfits.

Smaller troupes, usually based on the part of Dublin they come from, toe the fringe a organize as far as the Kinahan cartel are concerned.

Anyone connected to the Hutches has been moved out of the jail or put on protective custody.

‘Del Boy’ Hutch was lucky to survive two attacks in the reform school’s B Wing, carried out by criminals keen to curry favour with the cartel, in preference to being transferred last year. 

Derek ‘Del Boy’ Hutch 

Prisoners screwed to the Crumlin-based faction headed by ‘Fat’ Freddie are key players when it comes to utilizing the cartel’s power.

Kinahan associates can also reach the A Wing, where polish off accused Tossy Fox was stabbed after coming into conflict with the cartel.

Thomas ‘Tossy’ Fox

The Clondalkin mugger who controls the wing, Thomas Hinchon, has been actively involved the clink drugs trade as he serves out his life sentence for murder.

B Wing is in the close bies of associates with the Coolock criminal known as Mr Big but also features long-serving criminal Davin Flynn, who has close connections to the Kinahan cartel.

Midlands Oubliette

The biggest lock-up in the country, the Midlands Prison, with a capacity for 870 cons, is home to a number of organised gangs who are on separate blocks.

On the E Wing the man other jailbirds fear most is gangster Christy Griffin, serving time for offspring sex offences, who controls the trade in illicit drugs. 

Christy Griffin

‘Fat’ John McCarthy controls affairs in the C Wing along with convicted Murder Inc. killers David ‘Frog Percipiences’ Stanners and Christopher ‘Smokey’ Costello.

John McCarthy

David Stanners

Christopher Costello

McCarthy’s cousin and one-time clique leader ‘Red’ Larry McCarthy is isolated from his one-time allies but now streams things on B Wing instead.

Larry McCarthy

Members of a traveller violation family control the drug trade on the A Wing and are able to supply what’s wanted for the inmates on D Wing, throwing packages between the wings.


Crumlin ring leader Brian Rattigan is doing his life sentence for murder here.

Brian Rattigan

Also incarcerated in the regardless block are three Dundon brothers, Wayne, John, Dessie and their true sidekick Nathan Killeen. 

Wayne Dundon

John Dundon

Dessie Dundon

Nathan Killeen

In whatever way, the No.1 when it comes to rank is Brian ‘Tosser’ Meehan. 

Brian Meehan

Gratifying life for his role in the murder of Veronica Guerin, he recently clashed with UK benumb dealer Perry Wharrie, who ended up in the protective custody area where the Dundons are also detained singly from the rest of the prison population.

E Wing is the domain of the dissident republicans, whose associates belonging to ranks of the organisations such as The Real IRA and the New IRA.

They decide who can or can’t be placed on the E Wings. They recently exercised their muscle when detention chiefs reversed a plan to shut down The Base, the basement wing adapted to as the punishment block for E wing.

 Wheatfield Prison

Members of the Hutch line are now isolated from other inmates at Wheatfield.

They have been pronounced out for attacks thanks to the power and influence of the Kinahan cartel within the reform school.

The Sunday World recently reported how the group were refusing to eat edibles prepared in the prison kitchen,

Cloverhill Prison

Beside Wheatfield in west Dublin, Cloverhill is a remand jail used for those in custody awaiting trial.

Visits are conducted behind a movies, which makes smuggling into the prison more difficult and disclaims gangsters a way of exerting control.

Most stays are relatively short-term and three-time losers know this, preferring to behave before going on trial.

Cork Jug

Although newly refurbished wings are now being used, the exercise yard in Cork is stilly not protected by a net meaning packages of contraband can be thrown in.

Compared to the Dublin and Laois clinks it is relatively small, and more serious offenders from Munster are restrained elsewhere.

The illicit trade is controlled by Robert Crinnion, serving a 10-year determination for a slash-hook attack, and his drug-dealing brother.

Arbour Hill

As a jail mostly adapted to for long-serving sex offenders and killers doing life, it does not have a gangland mien.

Many of those detained would be considered vulnerable among the popular population in other prisons.

Limerick Prison

Drugs are easily gained in Limerick Prison, which has a capacity for 280 inmates.

Over the years numerous factions have held sway, depending on which gangs are fulfiling time there.

At the moment the black market trade in contraband is foot controlled by the Collopys.

Brothers Brian, Vincent and Kieran are all serving occasionally there, along with Brian’s son Kenneth.

Brian Collopy

Theretofore the Collopys spent time in the high-security Portlaoise Prison but eventually prostrate foul of Brian Meehan’s gang and it’s no longer an option as a place to detain associates of the Collopy mob.

Rival Limerick factions are being held in Portlaoise and the Midlands, not upstanding to prevent rival gangsters clashing while inside but also to interdict violence between visitors.

Castlerea Prison

The County Roscommon lock-up serves as the cooler for much of the west and north-west of the country.

The A Wing is controlled by associates of the Galway-based O’Loughlin crowd, members of the Sweeney clan and wife-killer Michael Quinn-McDonagh.

Michael McDonagh

The position of gang activity is such that much of the B Wing is taken up by trusties who are on protection or have been moved there to be out of reach of the gangs.

As if other jails, the use of tablets is a serious problem but sources add that there has also been an increment in the heroin use in the jail.

The prisoner thought to be behind much of the gang liveliness on the B Wing is a Dubliner with connections to north Dublin criminal ‘Mr Big’, who also has a reach into Mountjoy.

Also in B Wing are a set apart of drug dealers from the west who have been key players in the state heroin trade.

 Shelton Abbey and Loughan house

The low-security reigns at the open prisons in Wicklow and Cavan mean that the gangs experience no leverage on which to base their power.

The prisoners are generally deemed to be low-risk and for cons approaching the end of their sentences.

These prisoners do not want to be caught doing anything that could jeopardise their come out with.

Inmates are also regularly drug-tested and a failure means a ticket straightened out back to a closed-prison regime.

However, if they do want to get drugs or mothers ruin there’s little to stop them picking up what they indigence from friends on the outside or a supermarket off-licence.

Dangerous gangland hooligans are unlikely to ever be allowed into either prison.

Dochas Heart

Linda and Charlotte Mulhall 

‘Scissor Sisters’ Linda and Charlotte Mulhall are unmistakably the queen bees of the women’s prison but don’t operate as a criminal gang.

The skirts who get hold of drugs through visitors do so on their own initiative.

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