Costa-killing accused admits to fatal stabbing
THE man accused of murdering Dubliner Avril Flanagan apologised to her family yesterday -- moments after dramatically confessing to a Spanish court that he stabbed his ex-girlfriend nearly 50 times.
Alan Daulby had maintained a wall of silence for more than three years, claiming he remembered nothing about the day she died and blaming her death on a mystery intruder when the trial opened on Monday.
But yesterday he sensationally admitted the brutal Costa Blanca killing on May 29, 2009 after hearing a string of witnesses -- including his own father and sister -- give evidence against him.
Seconds later, he used a last address to the court to say sorry to the Swords-born bar worker's parents and two brothers.
"I just want to express how sorry I am to the family," he said.
"I will never know how this happened. I have to live for the rest of my life with what's happened. I'm sorry for this ever getting so far."
Avril's former Dublin Bus worker father Gerry and older brother Ger (28) remained impassive at the back of the court as he spoke.
Daulby's lawyer Francisco Franco told the jury he still wanted them to acquit his client, because he was deluded into believing Avril was an intruder by a combination of drink, drugs and paranoia following a row with her family.
The third day of Daulby's trial in Elche, Spain, started with graphic testimony from forensic experts about the attack Avril suffered.
State prosecutor Pablo Romero told the jury he wanted Daulby, a car valeter, to serve the 20 years for murder allowed under Spanish law, despite his confession, because he believed he deliberately increased Avril's suffering.
"He stabbed her with such insistency and intensity that the knife handle slid out of his hand and he cut himself on the blade."
Avril's father insisted Daulby's apology meant nothing to the family.
Speaking outside court, he said: "It's meanness as far as we are concerned. They're hollow words. He's taken this to the wire and put his family and ours through the trauma of testifying.
The jury will start deliberating its verdict today.