A 47-YEAR-old man has pleaded guilty to attempting to murder his elderly mother in a nursing home last year.
Gerald Vollrath, of Tramore Heights, Tramore, Co Waterford, had been charged with the murder of Veronica Vollrath (83) on or about January 9, 2012.
He had pleaded not guilty to murdering her at Killure Bridge Nursing Home, Killure, Waterford, when arraigned at the Central Criminal Court on Monday.
A jury of seven men and five women was sworn in for the trial, which was due to start yesterday and was expected to last five days. Vernonica Vollrath was found dead at the Killure Bridge Nursing Home in Waterford on January 9 2012.
Her son Gerald was arrested shortly after her death but was subsequently granted bail by the High Court and allowed to return to Austria, where he was employed as an aircraft engineer.
This was subject to a number of conditions. However, when the case was called yesterday, Paul O'Higgins, prosecuting, told Mr Justice Paul Carney that there had been a development since Monday.
He said the accused could be re-arraigned on a substituted indictment.
The prosecution then dropped the murder charge against him, and the charge of attempting to murder his mother was put to him.
He pleaded guilty to attempting to murder Veronica Vollrath at the same place and date.
The judge directed preparation of a victim impact report and agreed to relax his bail conditions.
Mr Justice Carney remanded him on continuing bail for sentencing on February 17.