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Friday 18 April 2014

Prostitute tells court of differing evidence told to gardai and court

A prostitute has told the Central Criminal Court that there were differences in the evidence she gave in court to what she told gardai in her statements.

Przemyslaw Trebacz (35) of Bramble Rise, Killynebber, Cavan has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Costel Catalin Cretu (38) at Connolly Court, Connolly Street, Cavan between October 13 and 14, 2012.

Mr Trebacz has pleaded guilty to criminal damage to a door belonging to Brendan Cosgrove at Connolly Court on October 13, 2012.

In his opening speech Mr Patrick McGrath SC prosecuting told the jury that Mr Cretu was guarding two prostitutes in an apartment when two men broke in, and it is alleged the accused stabbed him and left with 300 euro.

Chief witness Florentina Sotir (41) who was Mr Cretu’s partner and was working as a prostitute in the apartment that night agreed with Mr Paul Greene SC defending that there were differences in what she told the court and what she told gardai.

Ms Sotir previously told the court that she did not work for the first two weeks after arriving in Ireland.

But she agreed under cross-examination by the defence she told gardai that she started working the day after she arrived in Ireland.

She told the court on Friday she met Mr Cretu in Romania in 2009 and they began a relationship.

The mother-of-four agreed with Mr Greene that she was asked to surrender her children by the authorities in Romania. She said she did not have the means to look after them.

Ms Sotir said she did not tell the truth in her first statement to gardai because she was troubled.

She told the prosecution she came to Ireland for a cleaning job but she agreed under cross-examination she was told by a man in Romania she was coming to Ireland to practice prostitution.

She further agreed she was lying in her main evidence to the prosecution when she said she thought she was coming to Ireland for a cleaning job.

Ms Sotir also agreed she told gardai that when Mr Cretu asked her what kind of work she was going to do in Ireland she said: “ you know what kind of work”.

She agreed she told gardai that Mr Cretu had a role to get a difficult client out of the apartment and she said that it was agreed he would do that after an incident with a previous client.

The defence will continue cross-examining Ms Sotir on Tuesday.

The court has heard State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy carried out a post mortem and concluded that there were two wounds.

Prof Cassidy said there was a minor shallow wound to his back and a fatal chest wound causing considerable blood loss.

The court has previously heard that gardai were unable to trace the other woman working as a prostitute in the apartment.

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