Man accused of Aoife’s murder held until January

A lorry driver accused of the murder of nanny Aoife Phelan in Co Laois in October has been further remanded in custody and will appear again in court in the new year.

Robert Corbet, 24, of Sheffield Cross, Timahoe Rd, Portlaoise, Co Laois, had shook his head and said “no” when he was charged last month. He has been accused of murdering the 30-year-old nanny at Capoley, Portlaoise, on Oct 25, the date of her disappearance.

Her body was found concealed in a bin buried in a pit on the outskirts of the Co Laois town on Nov 7.

Two days later, Mr Corbet, who knew Ms Phelan, had been remanded in custody after which he was heckled. An order was also made that he was to receive psychiatric treatment during his remand in prison.

Mr Corbet, now short- haired and wearing a navy suit and white shirt, appeared again yesterday at Cloverhill District Court before Judge Gráinne Malone.

At his first court hearing there had been a Garda objection to free legal aid being granted on the grounds that Mr Corbet owns a haulage business.

However, last month Judge Malone was told that the objection was being dropped as “the haulage business is in the process of being wound up”.

Judge Malone remanded Mr Corbet, who did notaddress the court, in continuing custody to appear again on Jan 10.

The lorry driver was first arrested by gardaí on Nov 5 in connection with the disappearance of Ms Phelan, who was from Ballyroan in Co Laois.

He was released without charge shortly before midnight on Nov 6.

But after Ms Phelan’s body was discovered following a dig at Timahoe Rd the next day, he was re-arrested and charged.


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