Here is gang boss Liam Byrne living it up at the Champions League final in Paris – as the Kinahan cartel implodes around him.
Our exclusive picture shows defiant mobster Liam acting like he hasn’t got a care in the world – as his favourite club Liverpool played Real Madrid at the Stade De France on May 28 this year.
Just two months prior, and in a major blow to the Kinahan cartel, Liam’s brother-in-law Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh was jailed for 21 years for his role in a conspiracy to import €36m worth of drugs in the UK.
But Byrne, whose sister Joanne is married to Kavanagh, smiled for the camera as he posed beside son Lee and his two younger children among 75,000 football fans at one of the biggest matches in the world – all while his criminal empire fell to pieces at home.
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The picture of Liam also comes just weeks after the ruthless Kinahan cartel were exposed to the world after being sanctioned by the United States government.
Byrne is also on the run from the UK, where it is understood he is actively under investigation by the National Crime Agency – the same elite law enforcement group that brought about the conviction of Kavanagh.
But dressed here in head-to-toe Liverpool FC gear, Byrne stands close to the pitch with his children – acting like a man without any concern.
The picture emerged after a public social media post by Byrne’s daughter, who posted on Father’s Day: “Happy Father’s Day. Not only my Dad, my best friend.
“Love you unconditionally. Thank you for everything you have done for me and my brothers. We can’t thank you enough.”
Byrne previously fled Ireland in 2019 after the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) seized his Raleigh Square fortress and over €2m worth of his assets.
He remains a top target for gardai and is considered to be a senior ranking member of the Kinahan cartel – having replaced Bomber Kavanagh as the gang’s boss in the UK.
But his ability to lead the gang has proven difficult – with him having to flee the country and amid growing paranoia within the cartel of a so-called “rat.”
The Kinahan gang is said to be rife with paranoia ever since $5M bounties were placed on the heads of Daniel Kinahan, Christy Jr and their retired cartel boss father Christy Sr.
The cartel’s leadership has been left reeling after crippling sanctions imposed upon them in their safe-haven of Dubai – with bank accounts frozen and businesses ref-flagged by authorities.
Liam Byrne is understood to be paranoid that he’s next – and is aware that he’s a target for authorities in Ireland and the UK.
Nonetheless the latest picture of him shows his desperate attempt to continue to put up a front as a happy family man.
Byrne’s brother David was gunned down in Dublin’s Regency Hotel by the Hutch gang on February 5, 2016.
It was that ruthless murder that sparked a campaign of revenge from the Kinahan cartel that saw 16 more men shot dead.
The murder of David Byrne not only enraged Liam, but his pal and boss Daniel Kinahan as well – who was in the hotel at the time – and was the primary target of the hit.
But six years on the Kinahan gang has been torn apart – and many of its key associates are now in jail or on the run.
Those jailed include Kavanagh and Byrne’s cousin ‘Fat’ Freddie Thompson, who led the gang’s murder plot against Daithi Douglas on July 1, 2016.
Byrne’s keen attempts to show he still lives a life of luxury come three years after he was forced to give up Ireland for good – having been named in the High Court as the leader of a criminal organisation.
The High Court ruled that assets worth €2.7m – cars, jewellery, cash and the Raleigh Square home seized by CAB – were the proceeds of crime – and that Liam ran the gang named the ‘Byrne Organised Crime Group’ that controlled those assets.
He then moved to Birmingham – close to brother-in-law Thomas Kavanagh’s mansion in Tamworth, where the gang had a stronghold.
But that stronghold has now been firmly shattered – with Kavanagh imprisoned in one of the strictest prisons in the UK.
Bomber Kavanagh was once regarded by gardai in the High Court as being “at the top of the tree” of the Kinahan cartel – and a number-two to mob boss Daniel Kinahan.
The NCA is now involved in a case to seize his Tamworth mansion and other assets it has deemed to be the proceeds of crime.
And it is understood that Liam Byrne himself forms part of this probe – and could be hit with further asset seizures from authorities in the UK.
In recent times the mobster has fled to the mob’s bolthole in Dubai – but now that the Kinahans have been sanctioned there, sources say he is running out of safe havens.