Funeral arrangements for suicide pact man finalised

Funeral arrangements for Thomas Ruttle, who was found dead with convicted fraudster Julia Holmes in Co Limerick last week, are expected to be finalised today.

Mr Ruttle, 56, and Ms Holmes, 63, died in a suicide pact and their bodies were found in an upstairs bedroom of Mr Ruttle’s home at Boolaglass, Askeaton.

They had been dead for more then five weeks and their bodies were discovered by a three-man gang who broke into the house to carry out a burglary.

Fearing they might be linked to the deaths, the gang alerted gardaí and have given statements. They are expected to be charged in relation to the break-in.

It is believed the family of Thomas Ruttle has finalised arrangements for his funeral service which will take place at St Mary’s Protestant church in Askeaton. He will be buried beside his parents in the family plot in the adjoining cemetery. His sister and brother have travelled home from the UK to organise the funeral.

Meanwhile, it has emerged in parts of correspondence to solicitors in the North, that Ms Holmes requested her and Mr Ruttle’s remains be cremated and their ashes buried together. However the Ruttle family has established that this request has no legal validity and contrary to Ms Holmes’ claims, they were never married.

As nobody in her family in the North has been willing to claim her body from the morgue at University Hospital Limerick, it is now likely the coroner for West Limerick, Brendan Nix will have to call on Limerick City and County Council to organise a ‘pauper’s funeral’ for her.

While the couple were never married, Ms Holmes claimed locally they had been married abroad.

Gardaí suspect she was trying to made a deal behind Thomas Ruttle’s back to sell his old family home and skip the country to Spain.

She had told a number of people she and Thomas were going to move to Spain, but friends of Mr Ruttle said it was most unlikely he would be party to such a plan.

Ms Holmes had carried out extensive renovations to the house and builders were owed in the region of €50,000.

This debt had weighed heavily on Mr Ruttle.

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