Scissor Sisters’ mother gets five years for murder scene cover-up

THE mother of the “Scissor Sisters” – who were jailed for killing the man whose headless torso was found in the Royal Canal in Dublin – was jailed for five years.

Kathleen Mulhall, aged 53, who was in a relationship with murder victim Farah Swaleh Noor, told gardaí she had helped clean up the crime scene to protect her two daughters.

The Central Criminal Court also heard that she offered to take the blame for her boyfriend’s death.

Mulhall, of St Mary’s Park, Carlow, pleaded guilty in February to helping to clean up the crime scene in order to conceal evidence and prevent the apprehension of her daughters, knowing that Mr Noor had been murdered at Richmond Cottages, Ballybough, on March 21, 2005.

In December 2006, her daughters, Charlotte, aged 25, and Linda, aged 32, were convicted, respectively, of Mr Noor’s murder and manslaughter.

Delivering his sentence yesterday, Mr Justice Paul Carney said that he had the advantage of having been the trial judge who presided over the trial of Mulhall’s daughters.

At the time, Mr Justice Carney described Mr Noor’s death as the “most grotesque case of killing that ever occurred in my professional lifetime”.

Earlier this week, the court heard that Kathleen Mulhall was in a relationship with Mr Noor, whose dismembered body was found in the Royal Canal, Dublin, in March 2005.

His head and penis were cut off and he had suffered multiple stab wounds to the trunk. His body was identified using DNA evidence.

During the investigation into Mr Noor’s death, Mulhall was interviewed six times by gardaí.

On August 3, 2005, she said that she knew nothing about Mr Noor’s death and that she had only heard about his death the previous day.

Over a month later, she told gardaí that she had been drinking with Mr Noor and her two daughters on the boardwalk in Dublin on the day of the killing.

All four ended up in Mulhall’s flat at Ballybough and an argument broke out between Mr Noor and Mulhall’s daughters, who went into a bedroom.

Mulhall did not go in.

She told gardaí she heard “roaring and shouting” and that Linda came out of the room, covered in blood and told her that Mr Noor was dead.

She said that she did not see Mr Noor being killed.

Mulhall also told gardaí that she and her daughters cleaned up the room the next day.

When asked why she did not report the killing, she told gardaí: “Why do you think, because of my children.”

She said that, at one stage, she told her daughters she would go to gardaí and tell them she killed Mr Noor.

Mulhall was released from garda custody in September 2005, but gardaí were not able to locate her again until January 2008.

She was living in England.

In the meantime, in December 2006, Charlotte and Linda were convicted, respectively, of Mr Noor’s murder and manslaughter.

Mulhall returned voluntarily to Ireland.

She told gardaí she did not tell them what had happened in order to “protect her daughters”.

Mulhall has no previous convictions.

The court also heard that she had been in a relationship with Mr Noor since 2002, that the relationship was “abusive” and Mulhall had “suffered a lot”.

On Tuesday last, Mulhall’s counsel, Hugh Hartnett SC, told the court that Mr Noor was “very violent and abusive because of drink and drugs”.

Mr Justice Carney said that Mulhall was “fully aware” of the “grotesque nature” of the killing when she “presented assistance in relation to the cover-up”.

He said that an “aggravating feature was laying a false trail”.

Mulhall told Mr Noor’s employers that he had gone to Kilkenny.

Mr Justice Carney said that there were a number of factors in favour of the accused, including her guilty plea.

“My impression is that this would have been a very difficult case for the prosecution to prove,” he said.

Other mitigating factors were her lack of previous convictions, her voluntary return from England, her desire to protect her daughters, her attempts over the years to protect her family in difficult circumstances and the violence and abuse she suffered in her relationships with men.

Mulhall is the mother of six children, three daughters and three sons.

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