Children of slain Jason Corbett put into custody of their stepmother, who is chief suspect in case
The family of slain Limerick man Jason Corbett (39) are fearful that they will have to wait months before they can return to Ireland with his children.
Mr Corbett's family remain in the US one week after he was killed, as they attempt to bring his body home for his funeral.
They have recovered Jason's body but have not yet been in contact with his children.
The children, Jack (10) and Sarah (8), have been put in the custody of their stepmother, who is the chief suspect in the case.
Jason's brother-in-law David Lynch has appealed to the government to step in.
The Department of Foreign Affairs have offered consular assistance to the family.
"Something really needs to be done because we are very concerned for the children's safety at this point," he said.
"These kids are Irish citizens and are now in the US illegally because they were on Jason's visa.
"I have brought a copy of Jason's will with me to the US and in that will it states that my wife and I are now their legal guardians.
"The authorities really need to help us because it should never have got to this stage," added Mr Lynch.
Jason was found dead in his home in North Carolina last Monday.
Police officers and detectives at the Davidson County Sheriff's Office in North Carolina are investigating the incident. He had sustained fatal head injuries, police said.
Reports indicate that police were called to the scene after a domestic incident and an alleged assault at a house in Panther Creek Court.
Police have confirmed that they are not looking for anybody outside of the family home as part of the on-going investigation. No arrests have been made.
Jason's two children are from his first marriage to Mags Corbett, who died in 2006 after suffering an asthma attack.
Jason later remarried and moved to the US some four years ago.
The family said that they managed to take possession of Jason's body.
They plan to return to Ireland for a funeral but said that they will not do so without the children.
"We are in this for the long haul," said David.
"We don't care what it takes. These children need to be looked after."Tributes to Irish widower and father-of-two who was killed in his US home
Limerick family in shock following killing of father-of-two in US