Monday 29 December 2014

Wife killer Joe O'Reilly cooking up a career in prison kitchen

Alan O’Keeffe

Published 09/06/2014 | 07:20

Joe O'Reilly
Joe O'Reilly
Joe O'Reilly
Joe O'Reilly arriving at court during the trial
Rachel O'Reilly and Joe O'Reilly on their wedding day
Rachel O'Reilly with Joe O'Reilly
The family of Rachel O'Reilly leaves the Four Courts in Dublin after a guilty verdict was handed down to her husband Joe O'Reilly for her murder

Wife-killer Joe O’Reilly is learning to cook meals for his fellow prisoners as he begins a cookery and food management course.

The prisoner regularly dons an apron in prison to prepare a wide variety of foods, sources have said.

O’Reilly, convicted in 2007 of murdering his wife Rachel at their home in The Naul, Co Dublin, has undertaken a number of educational courses since beginning is life sentence behind bars.

The cookery course is his latest project and sources claim his training includes helping to prepare the meals at the prison.

Guitar

He has also undertaken a number of Open University courses and learned the guitar, according to reports.

O’Reilly (41) bludgeoned mother-of-two Rachel to death in the family bungalow on October 4, 2004. Her bloodied body was found lying in a bedroom. O’Reilly never expressed guilt or remorse for what he did.

At the murder trial, it was alleged O’Reilly had staged the break-in at his home to make gardai believe it was a burglar who murdered his wife.

But evidence of the movements of his mobile phone, which was tracked using special technology, revealed he was not where he claimed to be when she was killed.

He even went radio and TV about his wife’s murder and appealed for public assistance to help the garda investigation, going so far as to pose for pictures at the bungalow for the

O’Reilly failed in his bid to have his conviction for the murder declared a miscarriage of justice at the Court of Criminal Appeal in March last year.

Appeal

However, the court granted O’Reilly’s lawyers permission to re-enter the application when it is ready to proceed.

O’Reilly lost an appeal against his conviction in 2009, while in August 2012 he failed in a subsequent attempt to have his conviction quashed after arguing his detention in the Midlands Prison was unlawful.

In November 2012 he was granted legal aid in his bid to have his conviction declared a miscarriage of justice.

He is likely to be eligible for release in 2024.

aokeeffe@herald.ie

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