Montreal’s Irish Mob, known locally in the Quebec province of Canada as the “West End Gang,” rose to prominence in the 1960s. The group of killers, thugs, thieves, bookies, loan sharks and drug dealers still operate today.

Using the outstanding research provided at the Coolopolis blog (, Gangster Report has compiled a historical index of the main players in Canada’s only All-Irish crime syndicate for your reading pleasure. Alright, here we go.


The Leaders (chronologically)

Frank (Dunny) Ryan – The most iconic and revered of the gang’s bosses, Ryan led Irish mob in Montreal from the early 1960s until his violent death in the 1980s. He headquartered out of the Belvedere Motel, but was killed inside the Nittolo Gardens Motel by an underling of his in November 1984.

Allan (The Weasel) Ross –  Dunny Ryan’s second-in-charge, Ross succeeded Ryan as boss of the gang and avenged his death within days in brutal fashion. Ross reigned until he was imprisoned in 1997 on a narcotics trafficking conviction out of Florida.

The Matticks brothers: “Smiling Jack,” Gerry & Richie — Ryan and Ross’ main muscle and top henchmen, the Matticks Brothers took power after Ross went to prison and the surviving siblings still run the show in the West End today. Richie Matticks died of natural causes in 2016.

The Soldiers (alphabetically)

Paul April – Dunny Ryan’s primary drug lieutenant in the city’s East End, who turned into a rival of his over a debt and plotted successfully to murder him in 1984. April himself was murdered via a bomb inside a VCR less than a week later.

Campbell Ashton – Accomplished bank robber killed in shootout with police in 1962

Jimmy Ashton – Campbell’s son who followed him into the bank robbery trade

George (Georgie Blue) Calderwood – A loan shark and bank robber, Calderwood owned the Blue Top Tavern. He was killed in March 1971

Serge (The Sculptor) Charron – Matticks Brothers’ friend, who is a professional artist and expert drug importer

Larry Cooney – One of the Matticks Brothers bodyguards

Ray Desfosses – Allan Ross’ former right-hand man

Roddy Diamond – Irish mobster who ran for Mayor of a Montreal suburb in the 1970s

Donnie Driver – Matticks Brothers’ drug lieutenant

The England brothers: Roy & Ray – Dunny Ryan’s bodyguards, drivers and emissaries

Ron (Ronnie the Farmer) Fewtrell – Dunny Ryan’s main drug lieutenant in the 1970s

Kenny Fisher – Matticks Brothers’ drug lieutenant

Brian Forget – Matticks Brothers’ drug lieutenant

Petey Fryer – Retired Irish mob lieutenant. His brother Jimmy, another West End Ganger was slain in October 1968

Gerry Fyfe – Retired thief, truck hijacker

Richard (Ricky Threads) Griffin – Longtime liaison to the city’s Italian mafia, Griffin was killed by the same Italians he did business with over a drug debt in 2006. His brother Johnny, a fellow West End Ganger, is currently incarcerated on murder charges

George (Georgie Boy) Harris – An Irish mob drug dealer and enforcer who is serving a life prison sentence for murder

The Johnston brothers: Mikey, Billy, Stevie & David (aka “Abie”) — Trusted lieutenants of Dunny Ryan and Allan Ross. Their brother Eddie Johnston was a goalie in the NHL.

The Larramee brothers: Cody and Jamie This pair of up-and-coming Matticks Brothers’ lieutenants were both killed in separate bar shootings in 2013

Dickie Lavoie – One of Dunny Ryan’s main enforcers and labor union emissaries. While in prison in the U.S. he was paid to watch Teamsters boss Jimmy Hoffa’s back.

Harry Livsey – A strip club owner and bank robber, Livsey was killed in 1969 after a beef with Paul April. Livsey had kicked April out of his

Shane Maloney – Dunny Ryan’s son, who was convicted in a big drug case and is in a wheelchair due to a 1990s snowmobile accident

The MacAllister brothers: Billy, Petey & Georgie – Bank robbers and drug dealers under Dunny Ryan

James (Jimmy the Snake) MacDonald – Truck hijacker, gun runner and enforcer for Dunny Ryan. He was killed in March 1969

Donnie Matticks – Son of boss Gerry Matticks who has a reputation as a drug dealer

Brian (Kato) McGuire – Irish mob enforcer who is serving time in prison for murder

The McGuire brothers: Johnny, Paddy, Gerry & Ricky – Big-time loansharks and prolific legitimate businessmen under Dunny Ryan and Allan Ross

Hughie McGurnahan — Rouge Irish mob enforcer and loan shark who was killed in a car bombing in the fall of 1981 after feuding with Dunny Ryan. His brother Ricky, another West End Gang strong arm, was murdered in March 1991 after beefing with Allan Ross

Jackie McLaughlin – Dunny Ryan’s bodyguard and go-to enforce. He was killed in 1984, just a few months after Ryan was gunned down.

Johnny McLean – Matticks Brothers’ lieutenant

Eric McNally – One-time hijacking partner of Jimmy MacDonald. McNally was killed in April 1968 by MacDonald for stealing from him.

The McPolland brothers: “Killer Kenny” & “Crazy Eddie” – Irish mob enforcers

The Mingo brothers: Melvin, Bobby, Nelson & Miles – Bank robbers under Dunny Ryan

Billy Morgan – A retired thief, safecracker who used to headquarter out of the Cavalier Bar

Douglas (Dougie Glasses) Nemo – One of Dunny Ryan’s most trusted enforcers and killers, Nemo was close to the Matticks Brothers. He died of a heart attack at just 50 years old.

The O’Neill brothers: Eddie & Tommy — Irish mob enforcers

Daniel (One-A-Day Danny) Pelansky – Heavily-feared Irish mob enforcer who feuded with the Italian mafia and was blown up in a car bomb in the summer of 1970

Keith (Rocky) Pierson – Early-era mob enforcer under Dunny Ryan. The diminutive “wet work” specialist was bumped off himself in 1961.

Earl Poirier –An expert safecracker and Billy MacAllister’s right-hand man in the McAllister brothers robbery crew. Poirier was bludgeoned to death in his sleep, alongside his girlfriend, in March 1984.

Rory Shayne – German ex-military sharpshooter and bank robber who is doing life in prison for pulling a gun on a judge

David Singer – Irish mob enforcer who was killed in Florida in 1985

John (Big John) Slawvey – Heavily-feared Irish mob enforcer and collector

The Sullivan brothers: Tommy & Danny — Trigger-happy Irish mob lieutenants under Dunny Ryan. Tommy is killed by his own son in 1976.

Frank Ward – Irish mob enforcer and bank robber.

Frank (Little Frankie) Ward, Jr. – Retired  West End Gang bookie and enforcer who used to headquarter his affairs out of Smitty’s Bar,

Peter (Boston Petey) White – Dunny Ryan’s first cousin and one of his most relied upon lieutenants in the 1970s and early 1980s, White hailed from Massachusetts in the United States. Known as a drug dealer and eager enforcer, he was the West End Gang’s liaison with the Irish mobs in Boston and New York.


Related Post

Leave a Reply