Murder charge duo remanded in custody

THERE was a strong Garda presence outside a court in West Cork as a man and woman charged with murder were further remanded in custody.

A crowd of up to 80 people gathered outside Bandon District Court to watch as Catherine O’Connor and Ciprian Grozavu were brought before Judge James McNulty.

O’Connor, aged 35, originally from Kinsale, and Romanian national Mr Grozavu, who both have addresses at Bandon Bridge House, were charged at a special court sitting last Tuesday with the murder of Jonathan Duke, 27, at Bandon Bridge House last weekend.

Several onlookers behind crowd control barriers hurled verbal abuse at both accused as they were escorted into the courthouse.

Inside, O’Connor sat quietly on the right side of the courtroom, flanked by two gardaí.

Grozavu sat on the bench behind her with a garda beside him.

Mr Duke’s mother, Michelle, and other family members, sat at the back the courthouse.

The body of her 27-year-old son was recovered from the water under Bandon Bridge in the early hours of last Monday morning. He was buried on Saturday.

Inspector Joe O’Connor told Judge James McNulty yesterday that he would be applying for a further remand in custody of both individuals to allow time for the preparation of the book of evidence.

Following consultation with his legal representative, Macaire McAuley Adams, Grozavu agreed by consent to a further remand in custody to appear before Bandon District Court on December 16.

Following consultation with her solicitor, Eddie Burke, O’Connor also agreed by consent to a further remand in custody to appear again before the same court on the same date.

O’Connor’s brother was in court during the hearing and Judge McNulty expressed concern that he was involved in consultations between Mr Burke and O’Connor. But Mr Burke assured the court that he was taking instructions from Ms O’Connor only.

The hearing lasted about 10 minutes. There was an even larger crowd outside the courthouse afterwards. Several individuals shouted more abuse as the two accused were led out.

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