Moment suspect in Robbie Lawlor murder investigation is arrested

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Moment suspect in Robbie Lawlor murder investigation is arrested
Moment suspect in Robbie Lawlor murder investigation is arrested

THIS is the moment detectives investigating the killing of gangland hitman Robbie Lawlor raided a house close to the murder scene and arrested a suspect.

36-year-old man is being quizzed on suspicion of murder after the PSNI searched the property in Ardoyne overnight.

Our exclusive images show a large amount of evidence, including cleaning paraphernalia, being taken from the house by police officers wearing forensic clothing.

There was a heavy police presence in the area last night as the house was searched and examined by the PSNI.

Detectives are investigating if Lawlor (36) was in Belfast to collect a drug debt when he was ambushed by a lone gunman and shot dead.

He was blasted a number of times shortly before midday on Saturday in the front garden of a house in Etna Drive.

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Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

The property raided overnight in Strathroy Park is located close to the murder scene and is the third house to be raided as part of the probe.

However, a despite a large amount of evidence being seized from the Ardoyne premises, the murder weapon has not yet been recovered.

Robbie Lawlor was the chief suspect in at least six gangland murders including the abduction and dismemberment of 17-year-old Keane Mulready Woods in January.

Last night’s arrest is the fifth made as part of the murder investigation.

Four other males, aged 33, 30, 27 and 17 were previously quizzed but have since been released without charge.

Two of them, the 33-year-old and his teenage nephew, are key members of the McCarthy/Dundon mob who travelled to Belfast with Lawlor.

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Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

Police officers arrest a 36 y/o man and carry out searches in the Strathroy Park area of Ardoyne in north Belfast overnight for the murder of Robbie Lawlor on April 7th 2020 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

They were arrested in the aftermath of the murder after PSNI officers raided a house in west Belfast on Saturday afternoon.

It’s being investigated if members of the McCarthy/Dundon mob double crossed Lawlor after driving to Belfast with him.

The older mob associate was only recently released from prison after serving a lengthy jail term for firearms offences while his teenage relative is also well-known to gardai.

On Monday, gardai seized €50,000 in cash from a female associate of the gang which is suspected of being payment for the gang’s involvement in the murder.

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Shot dead: Hitman Robbie Lawlor was killed in Belfast

Shot dead: Hitman Robbie Lawlor was killed in Belfast

Shot dead: Hitman Robbie Lawlor was killed in Belfast

Shot dead: Hitman Robbie Lawlor was killed in Belfast

The cash was seized along with the M7 in Laois after associates of Owen Maguire (36), who had been feuding with Lawlor, met the Dundon linked female for the money exchange.

The two women, aged in their 20s and 30s, were arrested on suspicion of money-laundering but have since been released without charge.

Independent.ie also revealed today how gang boss Wayne Dundon and his brother Dessie were celebrating the killing of Lawlor in their prison cells in the B Base of Mountjoy Prison.

Sources said the brothers, who are both serving life sentences for separate murders, “have been cheering and celebrating the murder since Saturday.

“They’re walking around now with their chests out. Neither are saying they were involved of course, but they’re happy out going around the jail, they aren’t subtle about it either,” the source added.

Wayne Dundon (41) is currently serving a life sentence for the murder of innocent businessman Roy Collins in Limerick in 2009.

His younger brother Dessie (35) is also serving a life sentence after he was convicted of involvement in the murder of Kieran Keane in 2003.

A PSNI spokesperson said they are continuing to appeal for information in relation to the “brutal killing” of Robbie Lawlor to “help bring the gunman to justice”.

Source: Irish