Monday 19 February 2018

Man accused of murdering his landlord sent for trial

Accused Saverio Bellante
Accused Saverio Bellante
Tom O'Gorman

Eimear Cotter

A man accused of murdering his landlord, the well-known religious affairs writer Tom O'Gorman, has been sent forward for trial.

Saverio Bellante (34) was served with the book of evidence at Cloverhill District Court in Dublin yesterday morning.

Mr Bellante is charged with the murder of Mr O'Gorman, a journalist and pro-life campaigner, at his home at Beech Park Avenue in Castleknock last January. A solicitor for the DPP told Judge Alan Mitchell: "The director consents to him being sent forward for trial to the next sitting of the Central Criminal Court on the one charge."

The court was told that Bellante, who is from the Sicilian city of Palermo, has good English and he does not need the book of evidence to be translated into Italian.

Judge Mitchell said Bellante was facing a "serious offence" and he certified for an interpreter to be present at any legal consultations if it was required.

The judge assigned defence solicitor Michael Staines on free legal aid as well as one junior and one senior counsel.

Judge Mitchell told Bellante: "The DPP consents to you being sent forward for trial".

He went on to say that "the accused has been informed of requirements, he's sent forward for trial to the next sitting of the Central Criminal Court".

At an earlier stage, the court heard that it was "an extremely complex investigation file".

Bellante appeared wearing a blue jacket and jeans yesterday.

The body of 39-year-old Mr O'Gorman, an Iona Institute researcher, was found after gardai were called to his home at about 1.50am on Sunday, January 12 last.

Mr O'Gorman was pronounced dead at the scene and a post-mortem was later carried out.

For Bellante's next hearing, he will have to appear at his trial venue, at the Criminal Courts of Justice building.

The Italian has not yet entered a plea to the charge.

Irish Independent

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