WAYNE DUNDON returned to Limerick five days ago in an attempt to reassert his position as a crime figure to be feared following the attack of his brother Dessie at the Midlands prison.

Since the start of December, the gangland criminal has been flying in and out of Ireland from his base in the UK. He left Limerick after an associate of his crashed a stolen vehicle two weeks ago, killing two passengers. There has been speculation that the man who survived was on his way to commit a crime on behalf of Dundon. Dundon left Ireland shortly after the car crash but returned last Wednesday. He is being monitored around the clock.

According to sources, a reason for his decision to return is he wants to reassert his authority. Four weeks ago, his brother Dessie was beaten up in the Midlands prison. The attack on Dessie, and the pleading guilty on Friday of another brother, Ger, to violent disorder, are both signs that the gangland criminal's "power and influence are on the wane", said a source.