Saturday 20 January 2018

Trucker accused of Aoife Phelan murder gets free legal aid because his business is shutting down

A LORRY driver charged with the murder of nanny Aoife Phelan was granted free legal aid today because his haulage business is being wound up.

Robert Corbet (24) was remanded in custody for four weeks to appear before Cloverhill District Court again on December 13.

The accused, of Timahoe Road, Portlaoise, Co Laois, shook his head and said 'no' when he was charged last week with murdering the 30-year-old nanny on October 25, the date of her disappearance.

Aoife's badly beaten body was found hidden in a bin buried in a pit at the back of a property on the outskirts of the Co Laois town on November 7 last.

Corbet, who knew the victim, had been remanded in custody following his appearance at Portlaoise District Court, after which he was heckled.

An order was also made that he get psychiatric treatment in prison.

Corbet, a lorry driver, appeared before Cloverhill District Court this morning.

His lawyer said Corbet was consenting to four weeks in custody.

Gardai told Judge Grainne Malone that they do not know, at this stage, how long before the book of evidence will be served.

The court also heard that gardai had no objection to free legal aid as Corbet's haulage business is in the process of being wound up.

Corbet, who was wearing a black suit, striped shirt and tie, spoke only to confirm Declan Green as his solicitor.

Judge Malone assigned Mr Green on free legal aid and remanded Corbet in custody to appear before Cloverhill District Court on December 13.

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