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Thursday 26 April 2018

Suspect in Danielle McLaughlin murder will stand trial on four counts

Danielle McLaughlin
Danielle McLaughlin
Laura Larkin

Laura Larkin

AN Indian court has ordered that the man suspected of killing Irish woman Danielle McLaughlin is to face four charges at trial.

Donegal woman Danielle was found dead in Canacona, in Goa, on March 14 2017 and local man Vikat Bhagat was quickly identified as the prime suspect in the killing.

Danielle McLaughlin
Danielle McLaughlin

The 23-year-old is to stand trial on four charges: murder, rape, destruction of evidence and robbery.

The trial is due to get underway on March 26.

Danielle's mother Andrea has been granted a unique status during proceedings as she has been given permission to assist the prosecution.

This means she has a lawyer representing her during the trial who can question witnesses. She also reserves the right to meet with the accused privately.

Danielle McLaughlin pictured in Bali
Danielle McLaughlin pictured in Bali

Speaking to Independent.ie ahead of Danielle's anniversary her devastated mother said her daughter was an "an amazing daughter, an amazing sister and an amazing friend".

“I would like to know why. My question is why. Why destroy her trust? Why take away my lovely daughter? Why let the world miss out, her sisters miss her terribly, her friends miss her. The world has lost a lot in losing her. She could have done so much good in the world,” she said.

Andrea and her local community in Donegal have raised thousands to cover legal and investigative costs in the family's bid to ensure Danielle gets justice but are still facing substantial bills.

Anyone wishing to donate to the campaign to cover the legal costs associated with the case can do so by visiting the website www.truthfordanielle.com or visit any Ulster Bank and say they would like to donate to 'The Truth For Danielle Fund' with an account in Ulster Bank in Buncrana.

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