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Ebola fears as businessman dies after returing from Africa trip

THE HSE is investigating whether an Irish man has died in the first case of Ebola in the country.

Dessie Quinn (44) had been ill since he returned to his home in Donegal from a business trip in Sierra Leone two weeks ago.

Mr Quinn, a father of one whose child lives in Dublin, was working for contractors in the west-African country.

He was employed as an engineer with KN Network Services, whose headquarters are based in Clondalkin.

He was found dead on Wednesday morning at his home in the townland of Drumconnor in the south-west Donegal village of Mountcharles.

The HSE said Mr Quinn's remains were being held at an isolation unit at Letterkenny General Hospital as a precaution. A representative said the appropriate national guidelines, in line with international best practice, are being followed by the public health team dealing with the situation.

Samples have been sent for laboratory testing.

Until a diagnosis is confirmed, and as a precautionary measure, the remains will stay in the mortuary.

The risk of transmission is considered to be extremely low.

"He was being treated for malaria and as you can understand his family are absolutely devastated," said curate Fr Adrian Gavigan.

"It has caused a great deal of shock in the community because he was such a young man and not because of how he may have died.

"There had been no mention of the Ebola virus until the announcement by the HSE. It is a very, very sad time for his family."