The body of a man who had a reputation as an underworld hardman has been exhumed after his grave was raided twice in one week.
William Billy Isaac, originally from Denton, Manchester, was buried at Blackley Cemetery after his death in Ireland in 2013.
His family say he wasnt buried with any items of monetary value but police were called to the plot on Wednesday June 27 and Wednesday July 4.
Officers say a motive was unclear but as a result of the desecration have exhumed his remains and now secured the whole burial plot on Victoria Avenue.
Detective Inspector Claire Moss said: Police enquiries are ongoing, but we believe that this incident was targeted to this specific plot.
This is a despicable act, and it has caused the family an enormous amount of anguish and grief in finding out that their loved ones grave has twice been disturbed in what is meant to be a place of rest.
The motivation for this incident is unclear at this stage of the investigation, but the family want to make it known that their loved one was not buried with any items of monetary value.
We will do everything we can to find out who is responsible for this, and I would appeal to any members of the public who know anything to please get in touch with police.
A friend of Ricky Hatton and legendary Manchester boxing trainer Bob Shannon, Isaac had faced several criminal trials in his lifetime.
He was acquitted of the murder of a woman in Reddish, Stockport, in 1995, but had convictions for serious assaults and possession of live ammunition.
In 2010 Isaac was also found not guilty of threatening to kill a businessman in the north east after claims of a £2.5m debt.
He had moved to Ireland some time after 2007 following his release from a three-year prison sentence and lived in a secluded mansion in Durrus, West Cork.
Isaac, who also worked in Manchester as a security firm boss, died after a fall there in October, 2013.
Its thought he tried to climb into the mansion through a downstairs window after locking himself out.
The death wasnt treated as suspicious.
Anyone with information is urged to call police.