Saturday 1 October 2016

Woman charged with murdering her colleague 'lured him to his death' - court hears

Natasha Reid

Published 07/07/2016 | 13:13

Murder accused Marta Herda Photo: Collins Courts
Murder accused Marta Herda Photo: Collins Courts

The lawyer for a woman charged with murdering her colleague by driving him into a deep harbour has indicated that the State’s case is that she lured him to his death.

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Giollaíosa Ó Lideadha SC was questioning a garda dealing with phone records on Thursday morning - the second day of the 29-year-old’s trial at the Central Criminal Court.

Marta Herda of Pairc Na Saile, Emoclew Road, Arklow, Co Wicklow is charged with the murder of 31-year-old Csaba Orsas around 6am on March 26, 2013.

The Polish waitress has pleaded not guilty to murdering the Hungarian at South Quay, Arklow.

Garda Michael Hall testified that he had collated records of calls and text messages between the accused, the deceased and some of their colleagues at the Brook Lodge Hotel in Aughrim.

A number of the calls were made between 5.20am and 5.21am that day.

He agreed with the barrister that the prosecution opened the case, saying that how the accused and deceased came to be together that morning may be of significance.

“So these are potentially important calls,” suggested Mr Ó Lideadha.

Garda Hall agreed.

“The prosecution case is that these are suspicious communications and the accused has effectively lured the deceased out to his death through these calls,” continued the barrister. “Isn’t that the case?”

However, Garda Hall said that all he could say was ‘what’s on the phone records’.

The jury also heard that the deceased man’s injuries were consistent with drowning.

State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy was giving evidence of the results of the autopsy she carried out on the deceased.

“There was abundant bloodstained froth in his airways,” she said. “His lungs were double the normal weight and overinflated. Their appearance was consistent with death due to drowning.”

The trial continues this afternoon before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury of eight men and four women.

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