Saturday 24 March 2018

Murder accused told gardaí that he was attacked and woman who was with him 'saved my life'

Ciprian Grozavu
Ciprian Grozavu

Ruaidhrí Giblin

A murder accused told gardaí upon arrest that he was attacked and a woman who was with him “stepped in and saved my life”.

Ciprian Grozavu (42), with a last address at Bridge House, Sean Hales Place, Bandon, Co Cork has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Jonathan Duke (27) at that address on November 13, 2011.

Opening the prosecution case to a jury on Monday, Mr Tim O’Leary SC said they will hear evidence that Jonathan Duke was seen alive on the evening of November 13 and later found dead “some way into the” river Bandon in west Cork.

Counsel said the jury would hear evidence that the deceased was “trussed up or tied up in some way” and that his death was caused by strangulation.

Giving evidence in the Central Criminal Court yesterday, Garda Ciaran Ryan told Mr O'Leary, for the prosecution, that he arrested Mr Grozavu in his apartment at approximately 1am.

Gda Ryan said he explained to Mr Grozavu why he was arresting him – that it was for assault causing harm to Jonathan Duke.

In reply, Mr Grozavu said “they came in and attacked me. Catherine (O'Connor) stepped in and saved my life. She had a glass bottle. She hit 'Dukey' over the head. There was blood,” Gda Ryan told the jury.

Mr O'Leary told the jury previously that they will hear that Mr Grozavu knew Mr Duke, as well as a Ms Catherine O’Connor.

Ms O’Connor has previously been found guilty of Mr Duke's murder, the jury were told.

The trial continues this afternoon before Mr Justice Paul Butler and a jury of eight men and four women. It is expected to last two weeks.

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