Tuesday 11 December 2018

Killer driver Marta Herda blames victim for his death in prison book

Killer Marta Herda
Killer Marta Herda

Patrick O'Connell

Killer waitress Marta Herda has written a book blaming her victim Csaba Orsos for his own death.

The Polish-born waitress (30) is serving a life sentence for the murder of Mr Orsos (31), who drowned when she drove her car into the sea at the South Quay in Arklow.

Marta Herda was convicted of murdering Csaba Orsos, who drowned after she drove her car into Arklow harbour in 2013
Marta Herda was convicted of murdering Csaba Orsos, who drowned after she drove her car into Arklow harbour in 2013

Mr Orsos could not swim and drowned, while his killer made it to safety.

Herda's trial heard that Mr Orsos was madly in love with her but she had grown tired of his attentions and made the decision to kill him.

In her book, she refuses to accept the court's verdict and insists that she feels responsible - but not for murder.

She claims that Mr Orsos was attacking her in the car when it went off the quay shortly before 6am on March 26, 2013.

Torture

The Sunday World yesterday published shocking extracts from the book, as well as images from CCTV of Herda emerging from the water after the crash, which have never been seen before. In one passage, she writes: "It's still hard for me to believe this, or accept it.

"I often think about his family, about [the] torture they must be going through, especially on holiday or his birthday, or the day of the accident.

"I'm afraid to imagine his mother's pain and others.

"Although I'm sure that this accident wouldn't happen if he wasn't attacking me in the car, but I also made many mistakes. [Should I have] stopped my car, or should I [have] taken another route?

"It's not important now. I was the driver, and I feel very responsible for his death, [in particular] that I couldn't save him and find him - that I could do something differently.

"This will stay with me for the rest of my life. There is not a single day that I am not thinking about it.

"I would like very much that he was here, and not leaving me with all of this. I feel responsible, but not for murder."

In May, the Supreme Court refused to hear a further appeal by Herda against her conviction after the Court of Criminal Appeal had already upheld the original guilty verdict.

The DPP's counsel, Brendan Grehan, SC, had told her trial that the case was "crystal clear".

Herda deliberately drove into the sea, using her VW Passat as an instrument of murder.

"Whether she achieved that with a gun or a sledgehammer doesn't matter," he said.

Mr Orsos had a "mortal fear" of water, the trial heard. Herda "lured" him into her car and minutes later he was at the bottom of the estuary.

CCTV obtained by the Sunday World shows Herda make it back to land before collapsing on her knees outside a neighbouring property.

Her first statement to gardai gave the impression Mr Orsos was some kind of "stalker", while in her second statement, she said he was a "Hungarian gypsy" and that she knew "how they are with women".

She was also "caught out on lies" over her contact with the victim beforehand.

In her as-yet untitled book, Herda says it never even occurred to her that she would be convicted of murder.

She writes: "Murder never crossed my mind. That word frightens me, and I don't know how to get my head around it and I don't hear it. I can't get over it, I can't understand this.

"This reality seems [more like] fiction to my head. I would want to get over it, be strong and get through this, but this tires me, and I don't know how."

Joked

Writing of Mr Orsos, Herda continued: "I first met him when I started working in the same hotel. We have known each other for two years but it wasn't a close acquaintance.

"We never went together anywhere and there was no romantic or sexual relation. For the first year everything was calm, and I had friendly relations with him and his brother.

"Everyone was laughing when he joked that I will be his wife, but I let it out with my other ear, knowing that he's joking.

"After some time it began to be awkward, because his jokes starts to be less and less funny."

After Herda's conviction, gardai revealed she had taunted them with an anonymous postcard after returning to Poland following the crash. The card read: "Hope you have not much work." Gardai investigated and found Herda's DNA on the stamp.

Herald

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