Reports in Ireland say a man was killed and two others critically injured as a group of men began shooting at onlookers at the Regency Hotel in Dublin while it was hosting the weigh-ins for a boxing event on Saturday night.
According to the Irish Mirror, the perpetrators were dressed in police, or Garda ERU, uniform before firing their AK-47s into the crowd.
The official weigh-ins hosted at the hotel were for tomorrow night's now chillingly-named "Clash of Clans" boxing event—due to be televised on BoxNation—featuring Jamie Kavanagh's attempt at winning the vacant WBO European lightweight title against Antonio Joao Bento in Ireland's National Stadium in the south of Dublin.
Boxing promoter and owner of BoxNation Frank Warren—a victim of a shooting himself back in 1989—has since confirmed the event has been called off.
After initial fears of a terrorist attack, local police believe this to be a gangland killing as various members of the infamous Kinahan gang were present at the weigh-ins for tomorrow night's boxing event.
The event was being co-promoted by both Warren and MGM—the new boxing gym based in Marbella, Spain. MGM is presently being run by former world title contender Matthew Macklin.
Macklin's gym has long been a second home for the Kinahan mob as they have set up their operations in sunny Spain, competing with other Irish gangs as well as those from elsewhere in Europe. The gang are well-known to support Macklin and his understudies at their fights across the globe.
This is not the first time British-Irish boxer Macklin has been caught up in a gangland shooting. In 2014, Macklin's trainer and former European light middleweight champion Jamie Moore was shot multiple times in a case of mistaken identity after his would-be assailant saw him walk away from the home of a member from the Kinahan clan on the Costa del Sol in Spain.
Fightland reported in October that police would be tightening its security for another event, named "The Second Coming", featuring fighters from Macklin's stable. This arose following the gangland killing of Gary Hutch—a member of the Kinahan mob—who was allegedly gunned down by other associates of the gang. The Garda wanted to ensure no blood was spilled at the show should any of Hutch's friends or family wish to exact revenge.
Like Saturday's cancelled show, the Second Coming event also saw Jamie Kavanagh on the fight card. Kavanagh's father, Gerard, was a feared Irish mobster himself and also fell victim to bloody, bullet-ridden killing in Spain back in 2014. A year later, Jamie's uncle Paul was also killed in a gangland shooting in broad daylight in the streets of Dublin.
The Second Coming event went off without a hitch back in November. But, it seems Irish boxing's muddied links with the country's criminal underworld isn't going to dissipate any time soon.