Mourners sob at funeral for dismembered teen as priest issues chilling warning

The funeral of an Irish teen brutally murdered and chopped up in a gang feud has seen a priest slam the "appalling wickedness and evil" of the killers.

Keane Mulready-Woods' death shocked Ireland after his body parts were found across an area blighted by gang violence.

Today, Friar Phil Gaffney told the hundreds of mourners at a funeral mass for Keane that the sick killers "played God" and pleaded with other youths to learn from the "naive" teen's mistakes.

Fr Gaffney said: “Along with that there has to be great anger and even sadness, great fear and pain perhaps, at the thought that we live in a society where certain people took upon themselves to play God with regard to the life of Keane Mulready-Woods.

“They took upon themselves to be judge and jury, and executioner. 

"What arrogance. What appalling wickedness and evil. 

"God alone is the Lord of Life – from its beginning.”


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The mourners at Holy Family Church in Ballsgrove, Drogheda, heard the parish priest describe how youngsters tempted into a gang war over the illegal drugs market will see that "the promise of money and gifts will inevitably end in tragedy".

Keane, 19, was executed with a knife or knives in brutal fashion in the ongoing feud in Drogheda, a town north of Dublin, the Irish Mirror reported.

The dismembering of his body and the way in which his body parts were dumped near a rival gangster's home drew comparisons to the Netflix show Narcos.

Keane's arms and legs were found in a holdall bag near a rival gangster’s home in Coolock, North Dublin on the night of Monday, January 13.


  • Killer who stabbed dad-of-four to death before getting taxi to McDonald's is jailed

Then two days later his head and hands were discovered in a burning car in Drumcondra, in North Dublin.

Gardai – Irish police –  believe Keane was abducted in the Ballsgrove area of Drogheda on January 12 and taken to a house in Rathmullen Park where he was tortured, killed and cut apart.

Friar Gaffney described the victim as "naive" and warned his grieving young friends to stay away from criminality and the wrong people who have 'no value on life'.

He said: "Keane had his troubles and was young and naive enough to fall in with the wrong people, not knowing or anticipating the dire consequences.

"I hope that his death will be a warning to other young teenagers who are been groomed by the ruthless criminals, that the promise of money and gifts will inevitably end in tragedy. 

"Keane’s association with them, sadly, led to the inhuman, unthinkable way in which his young life was to end.

"This feud in Drogheda has to end sometime.  Let’s all hope and pray it ends before more lives are lost."

His parents Barry and Elizabeth, brothers Darren, Ryan and Jack and sister Courtney have been left with a heartbreaking void, said Friar Gaffney.

He also pleaded with grieving pals to learn from his mistakes.

“Please learn from his mistakes, getting involved with dangerous criminals, thinking some of them were his friends and yet they would sacrifice him in such a brutal manner," he said.

“Drugs have become extremely easy for young people to obtain. Recently someone commented that a lot of people are now budgeting for their debs – as well as their clothes and drink – they’re also budgeting now for cocaine, and other drugs."

The murder of the teen was the third killing in the escalating gangland feud since it erupted last July and the priest said it was shattering local families.

He added: "This murder has brought about an unparalleled level of revulsion, not alone in Drogheda, but throughout our country and, indeed, far beyond.

"Our thoughts and prayers go out to all whose hearts are broken.

"This great gift of life we have received from God our creator is a treasure.

"It is precious but it is fragile. 

"When death comes to someone young and under tragic circumstances as Keane’s, it robs us of not only what we possess but of our hopes and dreams, so many plans, so many expectations, can be no more. 

"No mother expects to bury her child no matter what the age."

At the funeral, dozens of the teen's friends and family wore white t-shirts with his face emblazoned on them.

Meanwhile, a red scrambler bike was plastered on the side of the white coffin carrying the remains of the slain young man.

There was high security at the funeral mass with plain clothed armed undercover officers standing at the two entrances to the church, while the Armed Response Unit were parked across the road.

Little brother Ryan poignantly carried Keane's helmet up the altar during the offertory gifts as many mourners wiped away tears.


Music played during the emotive service included the song 'You Raise Me Up' as the coffin was brought into the church and Donna Taggart's 'Jealous of the Angels' as the coffin was carried out.

After the funeral mass, the remains were brought to the nearby Calvary Cemetery for burial.

Friar Gaffney called for more action from the Government and slammed those who take drugs and fuel the violence and bloodshed.

He said: “It isn’t just communities with deprived socio-economic backgrounds that are worse for illegal drug taking, it has become ‘socially acceptable’ across the country among people from all backgrounds.

“These violent incidents need to be a wake-up call for all of us as a society to realise that actions have consequences. People who are taking drugs on a social basis have to realise that what they are doing is fuelling this situation of violence.

In an earlier funeral mass for Keith Branigan, believed to be the first victim of the feud, the local priest had urged mourners to "turn away" from violence.

The Drogheda native, 29, who was from Ballsgrove, was sprayed with bullets from a machine gun and hit five times as he carried out work at his mobile home in Clogherhead, to the east of Drogheda in County Louth, on August 27.

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