Two men arrested and then released without charge over the death of a Slovakian father-of-two in Cork have insisted they acted entirely in self-defence.
The revelation came as it emerged gardaí are preparing a file for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) over the death of Ludovit Pastor (40) on February 21, when he suffered fatal head injuries after apparently being struck with an iron bar.
The incident occurred in darkness between two articulated trucks at a truck-stop off the Pike Road in Fermoy, Co Cork - with another parked lorry blocking the view of CCTV security cameras.
Mr Pastor died after the blow to the head.
Detectives are now trying to confirm if, as claimed by the arrested pair, Mr Pastor had confronted the men while armed with the iron bar.
The confrontation followed an earlier dispute over tobacco products being traded between the four Eastern Europeans.
Gardaí believe the weapon used in the confrontation was an iron bar later found underneath a parked lorry.
The movements of four individuals - including Mr Pastor - around the Fermoy, Co Cork truck stop and filling station on the Tuesday evening were caught by other security cameras.
Gardaí have renewed their appeal for witnesses who saw or heard anything suspicious near the truck stop off the Pike Road in Fermoy around 10.30pm on February 21 to contact them.
Two men, Polish truck drivers aged in their 40s and 20s, were arrested in the early hours of Wednesday, February 22, for questioning about the circumstances in which Mr Pastor sustained fatal injuries.
Both men were working for a Cork-based haulage firm. They were questioned at Fermoy and Mallow garda stations before being released without charge.
The Irish Independent has learned both maintained during questioning that they were confronted by other men at the truck stop - and acted only to defend themselves.
Mr Pastor was born in Hungary but raised in Slovakia and travelled on a Slovakian passport.
He was fluent in Polish.