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Aoife Phelan murder: Man appears in court in County Laois

Aoife Phelan
Image caption Aoife Phelan's body was identified on Thursday

A 24-year-old County Laois man has appeared in court charged with the murder of pregnant nanny, Aoife Phelan.

The 30-year-old's body was found buried in the grounds of a house near Portlaoise two days ago.

Robert Corbet, with an address at Sheffield, Portlaoise, was charged with murdering Ms Phelan, who was four months pregnant, on 25 October.

The accused was remanded in custody and is due to appear in court again next Thursday.

At a brief court appearance, Detective Sergeant John Healy said he arrested Mr Corbet at 23:27 GMT on Thursday and charged him with the offence.

He said the accused shook his head and said: "No".

The 24-year-old, who was known to Ms Phelan, had been questioned and released without charge before Ms Phelan's body was found, hidden in a barrel, buried in the shallow ground of a house near Portlaoise.

It is understood a post-mortem examination carried out on Thursday revealed that the victim had been beaten to death.

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