Lovers get their wish

MARY O’CONNELL was granted her dream Valentine’s wish when her Nigerian fiance Martin Defokwu was released from prison yesterday.

The couple will now be able to get married after their last wedding ceremony was dramatically halted by gardaí.

Martin was arrested and jailed just minutes before the couple were about to exchange wedding vows at St Camillus hospital in Limerick last month.

He had to spend four weeks behind bars but was released for Valentine’s day on humanitarian grounds.

“Yes we now intend to get married, we are thrilled he has been released,” Mary said.

The mother of five said that Martin helped her survive a harrowing period after her son, Brendan, was killed in a stabbing incident at the People’s Park in Limerick city.

“Brendan’s trial was just over and then my father died and Martin was great in helping me get through all that,” she said.

Mary’s family also wanted Martin freed from prison and they hired a solicitor to represent him.

“It’s frightening really. When Brendan died there was nothing we could do to bring him back. But when they took Martin at least he was alive and we could do something,” daughter Sinead, 26, said.

Mary’s family including John, 27, Sylvia, 22, Eoin, 20, and Jessica, 14, were overjoyed Martin was released.

Mary who’s originally from Killaloe lives with Martin in Limerick city centre and they’ve been dating for three years.

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