Patrick Quirke, a 50-year-old farmer from near Breanshamore, Co. Tipperary, today (January 23rd) appeared before the Central Criminal Court, charged with murder.
The trial was taking place in connection to the murder of 52-year-old, Bobby Ryan, which took place sometime between June 2011 and April 2013. The victim is said to have been a “love rival” of Mr Quirke’s.
Mr. Ryan’s body was not discovered until April 2013, when Mr. Quirke alerted authorities that he found the body. The prosecution alleges this discovery was staged by Mr. Quirke, as the lease he had on the farm in question where the body was found, was about to end.
Mr. Quirke denied the charges and the courts heard that he had become angry at the time of the alleged murder as his relationship with farm owner, Mary Lowry, had recently ended. Ms Lowry had begun a new relationship with the now-deceased Mr. Ryan in the meantime, much to the anger of Patrick Quirke.
The courts heard that Mr. Quirke was the only one who knew of the disused slurry tank located on the farm, where Mr. Ryan’s body was found. The farmer told Gardaí that he found Mr. Ryan’s body whilst he was agitating slurry. The prosecution claims, however, that this discovery was staged. Mr. Ryan was first reported missing on June 3rd 2011 in the early hours of the morning. He was never seen alive again.
Farmer, Patrick Quirke, denies the charge of murder and the trial is expected to last eight weeks in total, with the jury required to visit the farm where the body was found.