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garda probe Man (66) taken to post office to claim pension died 'two days' earlier as he is named locally

The dead man has been named locally as Peadar Doyle who neighbours described as “a very quiet man who kept to himself”

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Gardai pictured removing the body from Staplestown Road in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

Gardai pictured removing the body from Staplestown Road in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

Gardai pictured removing the body from Staplestown Road in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

A man who was dressed up and carried into a post office by two fraudsters attempting to claim his pension may have been dead for up to two days, gardaí believe.

It is understood the men suggested the deceased man was having a heart attack when challenged about his welfare by staff.

Gardai and an ambulance were called to Hosey’s shop in Carlow as the bizarre events unfolded at around 11am yesterday.

The dead man has been named locally as Peadar Doyle (66) who neighbours described as “a very quiet man who kept to himself”.

Two men, both in their 30s, entered the post office on Staplestown Road in the town and attempted to claim the cash but were told they needed either Mr Doyle to be present or his next of kin.

It is thought they then went to Mr Doyle’s home and carried him along a public footpath before making a second attempt to claim his pension.

“They had pulled a woolly jumper over his face and put a hat on his head and carried the body down to the post office,” a source said.

The dead man’s appearance caused an An Post employee to become suspicious and she attempted to establish if he was unwell.

It is understood that at this point the younger men suggested he might be having a heart attack and dropped the body to the ground.

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Gardai at the scene in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

Gardai at the scene in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

Gardai at the scene in Carlow. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

“Emergency services were notified and the two men made no effort to flee the scene,” the source explained.

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A local woman who lives close to the post office told the Irish Independent her daughter witnessed two men carrying a man into the shop.

“She was leaving my house at the time and said the man looked unwell as his feet were dragging the ground,” she said.

The woman, who did not want to be named, said there was a queue outside of the post office at the time.

“It’s a small shop and you’re only allowed three at a time with social distancing. People were in shock as they thought he was after having a heart attack,” she said.

“I feel awful for the staff. I’ve a 12-year-old daughter and I’m trying to explain to her what happened and sure where do you start? It’s awful.”

There have been no arrests so far in the case and it is understood that the two men have told gardaí that Mr Doyle was alive when they brought him to the post office.

They were interviewed at length by gardaí and have given statements.

Gardaí are investigating if Mr Doyle had died of natural causes in the bedroom of a nearby property.

A post-mortem will determine how he died.

Neighbours of the deceased said they are in “total shock” after the incident.

“He was a lovely man, a lovely neighbour and we’re all very upset,” one woman said.

“We don’t want to speculate about what happened but all I can say is it’s a sad night and a shock,” another said.

Gardaí said the services of the Garda Technical Bureau and the Office of the State Pathologist have been requested and a post-mortem will be carried out to determine the course of the investigation.

The Mayor of Carlow, Fianna Fáil councillor Ken Murnane, expressed shock at the news.

“I was absolutely shocked to hear about what happened,” he said. “I cannot believe anyone would do something like that. It beggars belief, I’m just shocked.”

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