Man found on Louth beach possibly died from axe to the head

Marius Gaizutis
Marius Gaizutis

A jury in a murder trial has heard the body of a man found on a Louth beach in 2013 met his death from some sharp and heavy implement - possibly an axe - to the back of his head.

Marius Gaizutis (52) of Marsh Road, Drogheda, Co Louth is charged with murdering Audrius Butkus (44) at that address on the 9th or 10th of September, 2013.

Mr Gaizutis pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to manslaughter when he was arraigned before the Central Criminal Court on Monday. This was not acceptable to the State and a jury was sworn in to try him.

Opening the prosecution's case, Mr Patrick Gageby SC said it was beyond argument that Mr Buktus met his death from some sharp and heavy implement, possibly an axe, to the back of his head.

Mr Gageby added that in the course of the trial the jury of four men and five women would hear from State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy who would tell them her conclusions.

Co-accused Aivers Sonders (53) of Sycamore Close, Termon Abbey in Drogheda, is charged with three counts of assisting an offender on the same dates by impeding Mr Gaizutis’s apprehension or prosecution.

The particulars include moving the body from Marsh Road and placing it in the sea at Mornington Beach; cleaning up the scene at Marsh Road; and disposing of carpet, clothing, a nail brush, bin bag, bottles and tins from the scene at the Burke House, Mathew’s Lane, Drogheda.

Mr Sonders has pleaded not guilty to all three counts.

The trial continues and is expected to last five or six days.