Tuesday 23 May 2017

Park is dug up in search for body of brutal rapist

James Nolan disappeared in 2010
James Nolan disappeared in 2010

Luke Byrne and Cathal McMahon

Gardaí are continuing to search a north-Dublin park for the remains of a convicted rapist who disappeared six years ago.

Hoarding has been placed around the site in the Tolka Valley Park in Finglas, where James Nolan (46) is believed to be buried.

Fresh investigations were launched last December after gardaí came across a 21-page letter written by Nolan's suspected killer, who subsequently took his own life.

Gardaí believe Nolan, from Finglas, was strangled to death by his killer in Glasnevin Cemetery.

It's believed his body was taken to an address in north Dublin and dismembered.

His arm washed up on Dollymount Strand in 2011, but the whereabouts of the rest of his remains are unknown.

It is believed the murderer disposed of Nolan's body parts in Co Monaghan and at Tolka Valley Park.

The area where gardaí have been searching is at a steep bank alongside the Tolka River.

A source said gardaí identified the "area of interest" after examining the contents of the 21-page letter.

Searches of the area got under way on Saturday morning.

An inquest previously heard that the rapist's arm was found by a man walking his dog in Dollymount on February 8, 2011.

State Pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy said that Nolan's arm was "cleanly" severed post-death and tattoos had been cut from the skin.

He was identified using a DNA sample taken from the arm which matched a DNA profile that was on a UK police database.

Nolan had been arrested at Holyhead in 2004 when he was found using a forged driving licence and details and DNA were taken at the time.

The photograph and fingerprints were also cross-referenced with the Garda database.

Nolan's last known whereabouts have been cited as when he was seen collecting methadone from the Wellmount Clinic in Finglas on November 30, 2010. He disappeared shortly after his release from Portlaoise Prison, having served a three-year sentence there for burglary in Booterstown, south Dublin, in 2005.

In 1986 he was jailed for 14 years after he was convicted of rape and false imprisonment.

The 1986 attack is considered one of the most violent to have ever happened in Ireland and the victim was brutally attacked in front of her partner.

Irish Independent

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