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Murder trial will be 'difficult for the squeamish' - judge

THE trial of murder accused Graham Dwyer is due to get underway today, after potential jurors were given a "squeamishness" warning by a judge.

Dwyer, an architect, denies the murder of childcare worker Elaine O'Hara.

Mr Justice Paul Carney told the jury panel yesterday that the case would be "difficult for anybody who is particularly squeamish".

A jury of seven men and five women was sworn in for the trial, which is expected to last for six to eight weeks.

Dwyer (42), a father-of-two from Kerrymount Close, Foxrock, is charged with the murder of Ms O'Hara (37) at Killakee, Rathfarnham on August 22, 2012. Her remains were found in undergrowth in the foothills of the Dublin Mountains in September 2013, more than a year after she disappeared.

The accused arrived in the courtroom at 11.15am yesterday dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and blue tie.

hospital

He addressed the court only to answer "not guilty" to the charge of murder.

Mr Justice Carney told the panel of a number of south Dublin addresses associated with Ms O'Hara, as well as jobs she'd had at a newsagents and a school.

She had also been attending a hospital prior to her death.

He said he was doing this so they would know whether to disqualify themselves from serving.

He also said anyone who had a connection with the website alt.com should not serve.

"This case will be difficult for anybody who is particularly squeamish," the judge said, explaining that it was important that the jury be held together for the duration of the trial.

"If anybody is particularly squeamish, that is a matter that they might indicate," he said.

The jury of seven men and five women was then sworn in.

Some potential jurors were excused from service because they would not be in the country, while others had personal commitments and one said she was squeamish.

The defence and prosecution teams rejected some 15 potential jurors. The jury was told to return tomorrow. Ms O'Hara's remains were uncovered by a dog on a walk with its owner in September 2013.

hnews@herald.ie


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