Tuesday 21 November 2017

Victim worried she had been reported for working on dole

Colm Deely at the Central Criminal Court
Colm Deely at the Central Criminal Court

Niamh O'Donoghue

THE trial of a man accused of murdering a woman in Co Clare has heard the deceased was concerned she had been reported for working while on the dole.

Colm Deely (41), of School Road, Ballyvaughan, Co Clare, has pleaded not guilty to murdering his 43-year-old friend, Deirdre McCarthy, between 11pm on March 27, 2011, and noon the following day.

The Central Criminal Court has heard Ms McCarthy's body was found washed up on Fanore beach a few days later. She had been strangled.

The prosecution claims Mr Deely (pictured above) was the last person to see her alive after she had been socialising with friends in a local pub in Ballyvaughan.

The court heard yesterday that Ms McCarthy, who worked in a B&B, had expressed concern to friends that she had been working while on the dole.

Nora Arthur told Mr Martin Giblin SC defending that Ms McCarthy mentioned she had been reported for working while on social welfare.

Ms Arthur said when Ms McCarthy said that to her she told her she was paranoid.

She also said Ms McCarthy, who did not drive, told her she would go home with a female friend from the pub that night to save the accused, who would give her lifts, having to bring her home.

Cora Carey told the court she knew Ms McCarthy for 20 years. She said she got texts from Ms McCarthy on Sunday, March 27, asking her if she was going out.

Ms Carey said she knew Mr Deely as he was her friend's husband and knew he had a 4x4, a van and a red car.

She said Ms McCarthy was in "really good form" in the pub that night and was planning to buy presents for various people's birthdays.

Ms Carey told Mr Giblin under cross-examination that Ms McCarthy was concerned about working while drawing the dole. She said she had no idea Ms McCarthy and Mr Deely were romantically involved.

Ms Carey also told Mr Giblin that Ms McCarthy was a witness for Mr Deely at his wedding.

Ms Karen McDonnell told Mr Paul Green SC prosecuting she saw a 4x4 going past her house one morning. She said she saw a vehicle taking a right coming out of the coast road and then down the School Road at 6.50am. She said it was "an odd time" for someone to be going down the School Road.

She agreed with Mr Giblin she could not be sure if she had seen it on the Thursday, Friday or Monday. She said she was aware Mr Deely lived on School Road. The trial continues.

Irish Independent

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