Gangsters face jail over violence, 
drug dealing and firearms

Glasgow High Court. Picture: John Devlin
Glasgow High Court. Picture: John Devlin
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A major crime gang is behind bars after a large-scale police investigation into violence, drugs, firearms and dirty money.

The nine-strong mob includes cocaine baron Mark Richardson and ex-army veteran turned gun-runner Martyn Fitzsimmons.

The gang had been due to stand trial in a case that had been expected to last around three months. Prosecutors had listed 28 charges which included the shooting of underworld figure Ross Monaghan outside a Glasgow primary school.

Other claims were the attempted murder of gangland boss Robert Kelbie as well as allegations of £1.5m of hidden “criminal” cash.

But, following a series of pre-trial hearings amid heightened security at the High Court in Glasgow, the gang pled guilty to reduced charges.

Richardson, 30, who had been accused to trying to kill Monaghan and Kelbie, admitted having a Glock handgun in the city’s Baillieston.

Fitzsimmons, 37, who was also allegedly involved in the Monaghan attack, instead pled guilty to also having a Glock and ammunition as well as hiding £36,000 of dirty money.

David Sell, 50, admitted being involved in the abduction and torture of a man later shot in the legs.

Anthony Woods, 44, Francis Mulligan, 41, and Michael Bowman, 30, each accepted roles in “serious organised crime”.

Gerard Docherty, 42, initially charged with also taking part in the Kelbie murder bid, instead pled guilty to recklessly discharging a firearm.

Steven McArdle, 33, admitted to having a Glock firearm. Barry O’Neill, 37, the final member of the gang to enter a guilty plea yesterday, admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine.

The charges for the nine span between 2013 and 2017.

Judge Lord Beckett remanded them all in custody and adjourned the case until later this month.

Prosecutors have also made applications for the gang to be hit with Serious Crime Prevention Orders.

The move – believed to be a first for a Scottish High Court – is designed to tackle the country’s organised criminal gangs.

The original indictment stated a charge that the nine had agree to “commit and organise the commission of serious offences”. A number of locations across Scotland – including Glasgow and West Lothian – as well as the north of England were listed.

Other accusations included the January 2017 shooting of Ross Monaghan – previously cleared of the murder of gangster Kevin “Gerbil’ Carroll.

But prosecutors accepted not guilty pleas from Richardson and Fitzsimmons – the only two charged with taking part.

It was further claimed Richardson, Docherty and McArdle had tried to kill Robert Kelbie in Newbridge, Edinburgh in September 2016.

However, Docherty instead pled guilty to an amended charge of discharging a firearm at a property to the danger of others.

Prosecutors did not give further facts of the crimes the gang pled guilty to.

More information is expected to be heard when the group next return to the dock.