Brazilian man (29) charged with murder of former partner Bruna Fonseca in Cork

Miller Pacheco (29) was charged with the murder of his former partner before a special sitting of Cork District Court

Miller Pacheco (29) who appeared at Cork District Court charged over the death of Bruna Fonseca (28) in Cork city. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Cork Courts Limited© Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

Bruna Fonseca© PA


A man has been charged with the murder of young Brazilian woman, Bruna Fonseca (28), who was found beaten and strangled in a Cork flat on New Year's Day.

Miller Pacheco (29), who is also a Brazilian national, was charged with the murder of his former partner before a special sitting of Cork District Court.

Pacheco is charged with the murder of Ms Fonseca at No 5 Liberty Street in the early hours of New Year's Day contrary to Common Law.

The defendant has an address at Room 3, No 5 Liberty Street in Cork.

Judge John King was given evidence of arrest, caution and charge by Det Garda Padraig Harrington.

The defendant had been detained for questioning under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984 on January 1 and brought to the Bridewell Garda Station for questioning.

Pacheco was formally charged at 2.45pm at the Bridewell Garda Station.

Det Garda Harrington said that in response to the single charge, Pacheco made no reply.

The defendant appeared in court wearing dark slacks and a black jumper.

He did not speak during the brief hearing.

Bruna Fonseca© PA

Judge King granted free legal aid on the application of defence solicitor, Aoife Buttimer, and directed that Pacheco receive all medical attention required while in custody.

He also certified that a Portuguese translator be made available for future court sittings.

Because the charge involved is murder, bail cannot be dealt with by the district court.

Any bail application must be brought before the High Court.

Sergeant Pat Lyons applied for the defendant to be remanded in custody to appear before a sitting of Cork District Court by video link.

Judge King remanded Pachecho in custody to appear again before Cork District Court on Jan 9.

Ms Fonseca, who was from Formiga in Brazil, travelled to Ireland last year for work.

She was employed by BidVest-Noonan Contractor Cleaners.

Her work included duties at the Mercy University Hospital (MUH) which is located less than 100 metres from where her body was found at 6.30am on New Year's Day.

Gardaí and paramedics attended the Liberty Street flat at 6.30 on New Year's Day but desperate efforts to revive the young woman failed and she was pronounced dead at the scene.

A post mortem examination was conducted at Cork University Hospital (CUH) by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster on Sunday afternoon.

Gardaí have withheld the post mortem findings for operational reasons.

However, it confirmed that Ms Fonseca met a violent death.

The young woman had been beaten and strangled.

Ms Fonseca attended university in her native Brazil and had worked as a librarian.

She moved to Ireland last year.

Her body was found at Liberty Street just a couple of hours after she had gone out with friends to celebrate New Year's Eve in Cork city centre.

The flat involved is located just 100 metres from the Bridewell Garda Station and around the corner from Cork Courthouse on Washington Street.

Ms Fonseca's body was found on a bed in an upstairs bedroom at the flat which is located above Picasso's hair salon.

Gardaí have appointed a family liaison officer to assist her family in Brazil.

It is understood her family are hoping to travel to Ireland to supervise arrangements for the repatriation of their daughter's remains back to Brazil.

In a tribute, both MUH and Bidvest Noonan hailed Ms Fonseca as a diligent worker - and said they were "saddened and shocked" at her death.

"Even though she was only working for a short time for the company at the hospital she was considered a hard and diligent worker and an esteemed colleague. We extend our deepest condolences to her friends in Cork, and her family and friends in Brazil. May she rest in peace."

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