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Steven Gerrard parties with a drug cartel boss in phone video to a fan

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Steven Gerrard has been seen on a video partying with the Irish drug cartel boss whose son is allegedly  dating his daughter.

The former Liverpool star and current Aston Villa manager, 42, can be viewed on the mobile phone footage speaking to a fan on a video call.

In the video Gerrard kisses the screen and Liam Byrne – the head of a drug cartel’s operations in Britain and Ireland – gives the thumbs up.

The footballer’s daughter Lilly-Ella, 18, is allegedly dating Byrne’s son Lee, 23.

In the video Byrne offers to organise a dinner between them and Gerard, while the legendary midfielder says he will get him to a game with the Reds.

Byrne is a top target for Irish police investigating the alleged activities of the Kinahan cartel and a gang named in the High Court as the Byrne Organised Crime Group, of which he is at the head.

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Steven Gerard has no involvement in crime and there is no suggestion he has any knowledge of criminal activities. MailOnline did not get any response from his representative about the video in time for publication.

In the video Gerrard kisses the screen and Liam Byrne – the head of a drug cartel’s operations in Britain and Ireland – gives the thumbs up.

In the video Byrne offers to organise a dinner between them and Gerard, while the legendary midfielder says he will get him to a game with the Reds.

In the video Byrne offers to organise a dinner between them and Gerard, while the legendary midfielder says he will get him to a game with the Reds.

Liam Byrne is the head of a drug cartel's criminal operations in Britain and Ireland

Liam Byrne is the head of a drug cartel’s criminal operations in Britain and Ireland

Steven and Alex Gerrard and their daughters Lourdes, Lexie and Lilly-Ella back in 2018

Steven and Alex Gerrard and their daughters Lourdes, Lexie and Lilly-Ella back in 2018

Byrne allegedly became Daniel Kinahan’s right-hand man in Britain after his brother-in-law Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh was jailed in 2019 for possession of a stun gun.

He fled Ireland after the Garda Criminal Assets Bureau seized millions of pounds worth of his wealth in 2019.

The CAB has also seized dozens of high-powered vehicles, jewellery, bank accounts and Byrne’s Raleigh Square home in Crumlin, which was apparently fitted with a panic room and Jacuzzi.

Gardai are reportedly still hunting Byrne, and are still investigating the alleged activities of the most senior members of the Kinahan cartel after jailing many of their lieutenants in recent years.

Love: Steven Gerrard's daughter Lilly-Ella, 18, is allegedly dating the son of the Irish mob boss Liam Byrne

Love: Steven Gerrard’s daughter Lilly-Ella, 18, is allegedly dating the son of the Irish mob boss Liam Byrne

Sun-soaked: The influencer, recently returned home from a holiday to Ibiza, where Lee was seen soaking up the sun with her,

Sun-soaked: The influencer, recently returned home from a holiday to Ibiza, where Lee was seen soaking up the sun with her,

Liam Byrne: Mobster ‘running Kinahan cartel in the UK and Ireland’

Liam Byrne is the head of a drug cartel’s criminal operations in Britain and Ireland.

He allegedly became Daniel Kinahan’s right-hand man in Britain after his brother-in-law Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh was jailed in 2019 for possession of a stun gun. 

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Byrne fled Ireland after the Garda Criminal Assets Bureau seized millions of pounds worth of his wealth in 2019.

The CAB has also seized dozens of high-powered vehicles, jewellery, bank accounts and Byrne’s Raleigh Square home in Crumlin, which was apparently fitted with a panic room and Jacuzzi.

Under Operation Lamp, officers targeted £2.3million worth of assets including four homes worth £1.7million, 29 vehicles (£467,195), six designer watches (£71,910), two rings (£25,733), a bank account containing £31,563 and £29,912 in cash. 

Those jailed includes Byrne’s cousin ‘Fat’ Freddie Thompson, who is serving life for helping to carry out the gangland murder of David ‘Daithi’ Douglas in inner Dublin in 2016.

Byrne’s brother David Byrne was also shot dead in Dublin’s Regency Hotel in February 2016 – a brutal murder that greatly escalated the so-called Kinahan Hutch feud.

Under Operation Lamp, officers targeted £2.3million worth of assets including four homes worth £1.7million, 29 vehicles (£467,195), six designer watches (£71,910), two rings (£25,733), a bank account containing £31,563 and £29,912 in cash.

As part of their investigations, CAB investigators claimed Byrne was at the ‘very top tier’ of organised crime in Ireland.

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The video emerged on the same day Lilly-Ella’s alleged relationship with Lee was made public. 

In a series of snaps, shared to Instagram, the young duo recharged whilst getting hooked up to a vitamin drip, with Lee’s face shielded by his cap. 

Heading out for the night to enjoy the island’s famous nightlife they commissioned an artist to draw a hilarious caricature before flying home on a luxurious private jet. 

Byrne’s son Lee has no involvement in the criminal underworld and was previously dating influencer Daisey O’Donnell, before they split earlier this year. 

MailOnline has contacted representatives for Lilly for comment but did not get a response. 

 Inside the Kinahan Cartel: How Dublin crooks built a £1BILLION global empire linked to murder, drug-smuggling and gun-running – as alleged bagman ‘Johnny Cash’ is arrested in Spain

By Chris Pleasance for MailOnline

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When Christy Kinahan founded his drug-dealing ring in Dublin in the 1990s, he was already well-known to police as a crook – but almost nobody outside the local station had ever heard his name.

Now, he heads one of the world’s largest criminal gangs – on par with Italy’s Camorra mafia or Mexico’s notorious Los Zetas, according to American investigators – and his name is known across continents.

Dubbed the ‘Dapper Don’, his Kinahan Cartel – including sons Daniel and Christy Jr – is said to be worth £1billion with an operation that stretches from the cocaine plantations of South America through the inner cities of Ireland and the UK, via Spain’s Costa del Sol and to the glittering desert oasis of Dubai.

Over the course of three decades, the Kinahans and their associates – including an Estonia hitman dubbed ‘The Butcher’, an armourer known as ‘Mr Nobody’, and a gangland enforcer simply called ‘Hatchet’ – have been linked to drug smuggling, gun-running and murders including the notorious Kinahan-Hutch feud.

But the net is tightening. In March, their man in the UK – Thomas ‘The Bomber’ Kavanagh – was sentenced to 21 years in jail for smuggling. In April, the US State Department offered a bounty of $5million each for information on Christy Sr, Daniel or Christy Jr. And, this week, alleged bagman – Johnny ‘Cash’ Morrissey – was arrested in Spain.

Here, MailOnline breaks down exactly who the Kinahan Cartel are, what they are accused of, and how they rose from the streets of Dublin to become one of the world’s biggest and most-powerful criminal networks…

Christy Kinahan Sr, known as ‘Dapper Don’ (left), began the Kinahan Cartel as a drug-dealing ring in Dublin in the 1990s and has expanded it into a global empire. Son Daniel (right) is accused of running day-to-day operations of the gang, which including drug smuggling, gun-running and money laundering

Irish police (pictured) have been hunting the Kinahans for years, but had little success until recently when authorities in the UK, US and EU combined with them to try and bring the gang down

Irish police (pictured) have been hunting the Kinahans for years, but had little success until recently when authorities in the UK, US and EU combined with them to try and bring the gang down

Christy Kinahan wasn’t born to a life of crime, it was a life he chose. Raised by a middle-class family and sent to one of Ireland’s best schools, he was smart, engaging and had options. He opted to become a crook.

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His rap sheet goes back to the 1970s, when he was known to police for burglary, theft, forgery and property crimes. It was not until the late 1990s that he turned to the business of drug dealing that would make his name. 

Originally running an inner-Dublin dealing ring with old associate Thomas Kavanagh, Kinahan was harbouring bigger ambitions. Jailed in the late 90s for drugs offences, he used his time behind bars to become fluent in Spanish and Dutch – skills he put to use upon his release to take his trade international.

Dealing mostly in heroin and cocaine – according to US State Department investigators – he grew the ‘business’ into an empire, importing from South America and dealing into Ireland, the UK, and Europe.

Sons Daniel and Christy Jr were indoctrinated into the business, with Daniel accused by Dublin High Court in 2018 of running most of the day-to-day operations – which by then included arms dealing as well as drugs, across ‘Europe, Asia, the Middle East and South America’. Christy Jr is said to run the accounts.

Christy Jr is said by US investigators to keep an eye on the gang's accounts from his base of operations in Dubai

Christy Jr is said by US investigators to keep an eye on the gang’s accounts from his base of operations in Dubai

Daniel – who denies being linked to organised crime – also happens to be a boxing promoter, and has represented the likes of Tyson Fury. He was said to have been instrumental in putting together a bout between Fury and Anthony Joshua that was due to take place last year, before falling through.  

Christy Sr had brushes with the law over the years, serving jail time in Belgium and the Netherlands, but – aside from a run-in between one of his associates and the Irish National Liberation Army – the gang operated with near-impunity as the Irish Gardai struggled to track their international operations.

All that changed in September 2015, however, when Gary Hutch – member of the rival Hutch Gang and nephew of leader Gerry – was shot dead at his home in Spain’s Costa Del Sol.

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Gary had allegedly been working with Daniel Kinahan until the pair fell out over a scheme involving tiger kidnapping. Rumours – later proved false – began to swirl that Gary was a snitch for Spanish authorities. Money changed hands and one of Gerry’s associated reportedly agreed to be shot in the leg as a ‘payment in blood’ for the alleged treachery.

None of that mattered in the end, however, and Gary was gunned down by hitman James Quinn – who has since been convicted of murder – after reportedly begging for his life.

That sparked a brutal and bloody gang war that became known as the Hutch-Kinahan Feud, with at least 18 people killed – most of them shot dead – over the course of the next three years. By the time it was over, most of the Hutch Gang were six feet under. Two innocent bystanders were also killed in cases of mistaken identity.

The height of the feud came in February 2016 when Daniel Kinahan narrowly survived an audacious attempt on his life that killed David Byrne, a Kinahan associate and brother of Liam Byrne – one of the gang’s senior members.

Daniel, in his role as a promoter, was attending a weigh-in ahead of a boxing match that would see Jamie Kavanagh – whose father, Gerard ‘Hatchet’ Kavanagh, was an enforcer for the gang – face off against Portuguese fighter Antonio João Bento.

As those linked to the fight milled about in the lobby of the Regency Hotel in Dublin, six Hutch Gang assassins carried out a raid. A getaway driver positioned himself outside the hotel while two others – one dressed as a woman – guarded the door with handguns. Three men, wearing Guardai riot gear, burst in through the door.

The Kinahans got involved in a notorious war with the Hutch Gang, run by Gerry Htuch (left) after his nephew Gary (right) was shot dead in Spain in September 2015

At the height of the feud, gunmen wielding AK-47 rifles and dressed as riot police burst into the lobby of the Regency Hotel in Dublin and opened fire - narrowly missing Daniel Kinahan but killing associate David Byrne

At the height of the feud, gunmen wielding AK-47 rifles and dressed as riot police burst into the lobby of the Regency Hotel in Dublin and opened fire – narrowly missing Daniel Kinahan but killing associate David Byrne

David Byrne's body is pictured in the lobby of the hotel after he was cut down by machinegun fire. He was the brother of Liam Byrne, one of the Kinahan Cartel's most-senior members

David Byrne’s body is pictured in the lobby of the hotel after he was cut down by machinegun fire. He was the brother of Liam Byrne, one of the Kinahan Cartel’s most-senior members

Wielding AK-47 rifles, the trio opened fire in the lobby, killing Byrne. Daniel survived, and later claimed he had seen the rifles being pulled 20ft away and narrowly escaped as gunfire rang out.

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The feud prompted authorities to ramp up their efforts to catch the gang, bringing in the UK’s National Crime Agency, the EU’s Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation, and US State Department – due to the South American connection.

In March, they struck their first serious blow against the gang as Thomas Kavanagh and two associates – Daniel Canning and Gary Vickery – were jailed on guns, drugs and money laundering charges.

Kavanagh got 21 years for smuggling £30million worth of cocaine and cannabis hidden inside industrial equipment. Police who raided his bullet-proofed mansion in Tamworth, near Birmingham, also found hauls of cash and weapons. His conviction marked the downfall of the UK branch of operations.

Thomas 'Bomber' Kavanagh, originally from Dublin, ran UK operations for the Kinahan Cartel until he was jailed earlier this year for a total of 21 years for drug smuggling

Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh, originally from Dublin, ran UK operations for the Kinahan Cartel until he was jailed earlier this year for a total of 21 years for drug smuggling

The following month, the US State Department sanctioned seven other members of the gang – most of whom are now based in Dubai – and issued $5million rewards for information on Christy Sr, Daniel, and Christy Jr.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said at the time that, while the gang heads may have run from the law in the past, they would not be able to keep running forever – and would soon run out of money.

Earlier this week, the second blow was struck: Johnny ‘Cash’ Morrissey, accused of handling the group’s money-laundering operations, was arrested in Spain.

Morrissey, a former Rochdale doorman with an Irish passport, was detained after a raid on his home while he was sat topless. Spanish police said the raid had smashed the gang’s operations there, accusing Morrissey of helping to launder some £300,000 per day.

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Spanish detectives alleged that cash had not been physically moved out of Spain but spread throughout the world using an ancient money transfer system called Hawala. 

The informal method of moving money, originating from an Arabic term for transfer or trust and involving a network of brokers, is known to have been adopted by criminal gangs who use code numbers or tokens like banknotes torn in half to prove cash is due.

Detectives said the starting point for the Spanish police investigation had been the seizure at the start of last year of 200 kilograms of cocaine and 500,000 Euros (£430,000) in cash hidden in vehicles with ‘sophisticated concealment systems’.

Alongside Morrissey, Spanish police arrested his wife Nicola – who was later released – and another associate. A third man was held in the UK.

Nearly a dozen searches of residential and business premises took place in Spain as well as Britain, including two places in Glasgow and one in Heywood in Rochdale, Greater Manchester. 

Johnny Morrissey, full name John Francis Morrissey, was one of seven people hit with sanctions in April and named by the US department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

The US authorities said of Morrissey, so close to alleged cartel boss Daniel Kinahan he was invited to his wedding in Dubai in the summer of 2017: ‘John Morrissey has worked for the Kinahan Organised Crime Group (KOCG) for several years, including as an enforcer, and facilitates international drug shipments for the organisation from South America. John Morrissey is also involved in money laundering.’

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Johnny 'Cash' Morrissey - the alleged money-man of the Kinahan Cartel - was arrested in Spain earlier this week

Johnny ‘Cash’ Morrissey – the alleged money-man of the Kinahan Cartel – was arrested in Spain earlier this week  

His wife Nicola, pictured centre, CEO of a Scotland-based vodka firm linked by police to organised crime, raised her middle finger as she was walked out by armed Spanish cops behind him

His wife Nicola, pictured centre, CEO of a Scotland-based vodka firm linked by police to organised crime, raised her middle finger as she was walked out by armed Spanish cops behind him

A helicopter circles ahead over a compound as Spanish police cracked down on the cartel

A helicopter circles ahead over a compound as Spanish police cracked down on the cartel

Source: Daily Mail

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