independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

State given two weeks to complete book of evidence for Elaine O'Hara murder trial

Graham Dwyer

THE State has been allowed two weeks to complete a book of evidence for the trial of architect Graham Dwyer who is accused of the murder of childcare worker Elaine O'Hara.

Mr Dwyer, who is originally from Cork, but has an address at Kerrymount Close, Foxrock, Dublin 18, is accused of the murder of Elaine O'Hara (37) in Co Dublin on August 22, 2012.

Her remains were discovered on Killakee mountain, Rathfarnham, Co. Dublin, in September 2013, more than a year after she was last seen.

The 41-year-old married father-of-two had been charged on October 18 last and when asked if had anything to say, he had replied: “I do, not guilty”. He was subsequently refused bail and today he appeared again via video-link before Judge Victor Blake at Cloverhill District Court.

Dressed in a navy and cream striped jumper and blue jeans, he confirmed he could see the court and hear the proceedings and replied “morning” when greeted by the judge.

Solicitor Ronan O'Brien, for the DPP, said the case was listed today for book of evidence to be served on the accused.

He also said “directions were conveyed on the last date, it's a complicated matter involving very serious charge". A two-week adjournment was sought by the prosecution to finalise the book of evidence.

“From our perspective there’s consent to that”, Mr Dwyer's solicitor, Jonathan Dunphy, told Judge Blake but he stressed that there was consent to two weeks only.

Judge Blake remanded the defendant in continuing custody until January 29 to appear again at the same court. Mr Dunphy also told the judge that the defence was expecting that the book will be served at his client's next court appearance.

At a previous hearings the prosecution had said the file on the case was quite large and comprises eight volumes. Gardai have taken more than 300 statements and have in excess of 800 exhibits, the court has been told.

In November, the district court had ruled that Mr Dwyer could be granted legal aid as he is no longer on a salary and a mortgage on his family home was in arrears.

Childcare worker Ms O’Hara (37), from Killiney, in Dublin, who also had a part-time job in a newsagents, was last seen at around 6.15pm on August 22, 2012 last year, near Shanganagh cemetery in south Dublin, where her mother is buried.

Her remains were found in undergrowth by a woman walking her dog on September 13 last year on Killakee mountain, Rathfarnham. A bag containing several items belonging to her were found near Roundwood, Co Wicklow, at different times in the days before and after the discovery of her body.

The opening of an inquest into her death heard that no cause of death has been established and the inquest has been adjourned until the outcome of criminal proceedings.

Tom Tuite

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