Judge wants progress in gruesome canal body case

Kenneth O'Brien
Kenneth O'Brien
Paul Wells.png
Paul Wells.png

A JUDGE has asked the DPP to make progress in the case of a 48-year-old Dublin man charged with the murder of Kenneth O'Brien, whose dismembered body was found in a suitcase in a canal.

Paul Wells from Barnamore Park in Finglas is accused of the murder of Kenneth O'Brien in January.

He will face his next hearing on June 22 at Cloverhill District Court, Judge Victor Blake ordered, adding that he hoped for progress in obtaining formal directions from the DPP.

The court heard the case file is with the DPP as of Wednesday morning and it contains 13 volumes.

Mr Wells, wearing a grey hoody and grey tracksuit bottoms, would not consent to appearing via video link at his next hearing.

‘’As I said I’ll start my clock running, it's step one of three, I'm hoping for progress on that day," the judge told Garda Sgt Gerard Moore.

Mr O'Brien's partner and a large number of friends and family were there for the appearance.

JCB driver Kenneth O'Brien (33) from Lealand Road in Clondalkin in Dublin was reported missing on Jan. 15 last after he had left his home telling family members he was going to work.

The father-of-one had recently come back from Australia where he had been employed for three years.

The following day his torso was found in suitcase by walkers at the Grand Canal near Cellbridge in Co. Kildare.

Investigating gardai carried out a search operation resulting in other body parts being found in bags in the canal. DNA tests confirmed the remains were those of Mr O'Brien.

In February, Paul Wells was charged with the murder of Kenneth O'Brien on or about Jan.15 and Jan. 16 last.

The murder is alleged to have occurred at the defendant's address. He was remanded in custody and faced his seventh hearing yesterday/today (wed) when he appeared before Judge Blake at Cloverhill District Court.

Due to the nature of the charge he would have to make a bail application in the High Court.

A second man arrested in connection with the investigation was released from Garda custody without charge and a file is to be sent to the DPP.