Daniel Kinahan may have laughed off claims he ‘supplied guns to rebellious children in Africa’ yesterday – but documents on WikiLeaks claim his criminal tentacles extend as far as Sierra Leone.
As part of his campaign to portray himself as a hardworking businessman who only wants to ‘help people’, the mobster sat down for an interview with James English for a new episode of his Anything Goes podcast.
In a clip from the interview, which will air on St. Patrick’s Day, Kinahan takes aim at the media for making him “that bad person.”
In a brazen attempt to dismiss his links to organized crime, he said: “The things that they wrote about me, the newspapers wrote about me that I supplied arms to these rebel children in Africa, I I had a billion dollars worth of cocaine that crossed America.
However, The Sunday World can reveal that, according to documents released by WikiLeaks, SOCA (the UK’s Serious Organized Crime Agency) had identified a person of “interest” who they believe represented Kinahan’s business interests in Africa.
The cable says this “person of interest” is a “British-Lebanese who works out of Birmingham and travels to Sierra Leone every six weeks.”
“The family is active in the mining sector here, and (the named man) is said to have come to Sierra Leone to do charity work in Kono district.
“According to SOCA, however, he is linked to Daniel Kinahan, an Irish businessman involved in drug trafficking across Europe and currently the target of a major investigation.
“SOCA believes that (the named man) represents Kinahan in Sierra Leone, and that Kinahan may be interested in expanding his network in West Africa.”
The details were contained in a file on the British businessman which had been compiled following a surveillance operation carried out in Sierra Leone on behalf of SOCA.
The cable, sent from the United States Embassy in Freetown, the Sierra Leonean capital, reveals that a number of Europeans present themselves as partners of Colombian groups already active in the region.
According to the leaked cable, the businessman traveled regularly to Sierra Leone, representing Daniel Kinahan, whose father was seen by the agency as interested in expanding the network to West Africa.
Meanwhile, for Kinahan, the podcast interview is just the latest in a series of press releases, images and propaganda he has issued in recent months in an effort to clean up his image.
The popular podcast has already featured discussions with a host of MTK boxers, many of whom have taken the opportunity to praise drug boss Kinahan.
As he sits down with English people, Kinahan presents himself as a victim of a media that “for me, manipulates (sic) everyone”.
“They are creating reality for the people of the future,” he says. “For what they want to think, how they sleep, what they eat, what they buy.
He also blames the media and “big cats” for the ongoing controversy over the Josh Taylor and Jack Catterall fight which is now being investigated by the British Boxing Board of Control.
“Josh is a very dear friend of mine, as is Jack, a very dear friend of mine,” Kinahan says. “I know Jack’s kids, (they) have been there, his girlfriend. I know Josh’s girlfriend, I spent a lot of time with them.
“Really good people. They didn’t do anything wrong.
“So what’s happening now with them is the media and the big cats will make Josh and Jack face off or their girlfriends against each other
“So do I think there’s corruption, if I’m being honest, no. Do I think that was massive incompetence? Yes, a billion percent.
In a later excerpt, he says, “I grew up the way I grew up.
“I never said I was an angel, but I’m proud of where I was born and I’m proud of how I was born and what I’ve done.
“I just want to turn things into a positive and I want to help people.”
He also describes, for the first time, how he narrowly avoided being shot during the attack on the Regency Hotel.
Kinahan was the target of the group of gunmen who broke into the hotel in 2016 and opened fire.
He fled on foot but his associate David Byrne (34), of Crumlin, was shot dead and several other men were injured but survived.
“I never told this story to anyone,” Kinahan says in the new trailer for his “world exclusive” interview with English.
“I saw (sic) there, maybe six meters away from me, (as he gets up and imitates a man pulling a gun out of his belt) and then I see the gun in the back and then I leave.
“And then (I hear) ‘boom boom’ gunshots behind me.
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