TWO suspected killers had been drinking heavily before a Dublin man was beaten to death.
It is feared that Thomas Horan (63) unwittingly allowed the chief suspects – a brother and sister – into his Ringsend home before he was murdered.
Sources close to the investigation say the pair, who were arrested yesterday in relation to the death, had called to the flat after hours of drinking in Ringsend on Sunday night.
Gardai are investigating if the sister had previously met Mr Horan.
Neighbours reported hearing a row in the victim's flat in the Cambridge Court complex. Gardai were called to the scene after his body was found at 4am on Monday.
The investigation was upgraded to murder after a post mortem established Mr Horan died violently.
A 27-year-old-man and his 37-year-old sister were later arrested. They were both being questioned at Donnybrook and Irishtown garda stations today.
Investigating officers have renewed their appeals for taxi drivers who may have collected or dropped a man and woman off in the area in the early hours of Monday to come forward.
Gardai believe the pair were present in the flat when Mr Horan died and had been invited into the house by him.
Investigators are working on the theory that a late night row broke out in the property and the siblings may have called to the vulnerable man to take cash from him.
Mr Horan suffered blunt force trauma to his body in the horror attack.
Gardai believe the female suspect had befriended Mr Horan in recent months. She was being questioned by detectives at Donnybrook garda station.
The scene of the discovery was sealed off after a Dublin Fire Brigade ambulance crew dealt with a call to the Cambridge Court complex for the elderly in Ringsend in the early hours of Monday morning, after Mr Horan's body was discovered by a friend in a ground floor bedroom.
It is understood that Mr Horan had been living in the flat for around five years.
Sources told the Herald that neighbours had heard an argument and raised voices at the flat on Sunday night.
There was no sign of forced entry to the apartment, leading gardai to believe that Mr Horan knew whoever had been in his home.
Both suspects have convictions for offences including burglary and theft.
It is believed the woman has been living in the south inner city area in recent months, while her brother has numerous addresses including hostels around the city centre.
Mr Horan was not understood to have any underlying medical conditions that would have contributed to his death.
He was originally from Mullingar, Co Westmeath and his former wife lives in a flat in another area of Dublin's south city.
Mr Horan, was the father of one grown-up daughter, who is thought to be living in the UK.