The mother of one of the men on trial accused of the murder of businessman Roy Collins has been found dead in a canal this morning.
The woman, named locally as Susan Killeen, whose maiden name is Casey, entered the water at Lock Quay, Limerick City, shortly before 1am.
Gardaí confirmed that a woman aged in her mid-50s died in a tragic incident and they were not treating the death as suspicious.
Her son, Nathan Killeen (aged 23) from Hyde Road, Limerick, is currently on trial for murdering Mr Collins.
A crew from Limerick City Fire and Rescue Service retrieved the body which was discovered floating on the surface.
It is believed a passer-by heard the woman enter the water before alerting the emergency services.
A crew from Limerick Marine Search and Rescue Service was also dispatched to the scene.
"We got a call around 1am that there was a body floating in the canal. I believe someone heard a splash and called gardaí," said a emergency services source.
A spokesman for Limerick Marine Search and Rescues said: "We had a boat crew there and a Limerick City fire crew arrived before hand and found the body floating so our boat wasn't required.
"The boat wasn't required anyway as the woman was found in the canal at the back of Clare street. We couldn't get the boat in there anyway."
A Garda spokesman said: "We are investigating it. We would appeal for witnesses or anyone with information to contact us at Henry Street (061-212400)."
Mr Killeen and co-accused Wayne Dundon, of Lenihan Avenue, Prospect, have both gone on trial at the Special Criminal Court charged with murdering Mr Collins at Coin Castle Amusements, Roxboro Road Shopping Centre on April 9, 2009.
They have both pleaded not guilty.
The non-jury court has heard that Mr Collins was at work around noon when a lone gunman entered his amusement arcade business and fired a single gunshot, hitting him in the chest. He died minutes later.
Prosecutor Michael O’Higgins SC claimed in his opening speech that Mr Dundon had directed the murder from prison, that Nathan Killeen was the getaway driver, and James Dillon was the gunman.
Mr Dillon (aged 28) is serving life in prison after been found guilty of the murder in May 2010.
The four-week trial -- before Ms Justice O’Malley, Judge Margaret Heneghan and Judge Ann Ryan is the first to be heard by three female judges -- had been adjourned to next week prior to Mr Killeen's mother's death.
Susan Killeen's son Gerard, a twin brother of Nathan, took his own life last year.
A 16-year old relative of Mrs Killeen's also lost her life in the same canal last year.
Mrs Killeen's brother Raymond Casey, of Ashe Avenue, Carew Park, Southill, died aged 45, after he suffered a heart attack in Portlaoise jail.