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Man held over knife killing of dad of two

A 32-YEAR-OLD man is being quizzed by gardai over the murder of a man who died from multiple stab wounds.

The chief suspect was arrested by gardai in Limerick city near the rented apartment where Martin Purcell (54) died.

The father-of-two suffered around 30 stab wounds to his body including one to the neck and may have been killed up to 24 hours before his body was discovered on Friday morning.

Gardai are trying to establish who Mr Purcell was with in the hours before his murder

One theory being investigated is that he may have unwittingly invited his killer back to his apartment.

Sources have explained that Mr Purcell regularly invited people into his flat where they would drink alcohol.

The Herald understands that a number of items including the possible murder weapon were recovered by gardai from a property near the murder scene over the weekend.

In another significant development, a premises in Limerick city has also been sealed off by gardai. It is believed that this building is where the arrested man lived.

Sources say that key forensic material has been seized from this property.

The arrested man is being held under Section Four of the Criminal Justice Act and must be released or charged by investigating officers later today. He is being questioned at Henry Street Garda Station.

Sources say that the suspect is known for involvement in petty crime in Limerick and has served a number of short prison sentences.

"He is well known to gardai but not for serious offences like this. He has built up a lot of minor convictions over the years," said a source.