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Femmes fatales The notorious female killers locked up in Irish prisons

The lifers: Scissor Sister is the longest-serving in women’s jail


Linda and Charlotte Mulhall

Linda and Charlotte Mulhall

Linda and Charlotte Mulhall

Scissor Sister Charlotte Mulhall is Ireland's longest-serving female killer still behind bars for the gruesome murder of her mother's boyfriend in 2005.

This month, she took a High Court case in a bid to reverse her transfer from the Dochas Centre in the Mountjoy prison complex to Limerick where she is serving her time.

She said the move from Dublin, away from her dog and family visits, had left her feeling sad.

Her sister Linda, who was convicted of manslaughter, has served her sentence for the killing of Farah Swaleh Noor. He was dismembered and his body parts were discovered in Dublin's Royal Canal, although his head - which they claimed to have taken to a park - was never found.


Farah Noor was murdered by Linda and Charlotte Mulhall

Farah Noor was murdered by Linda and Charlotte Mulhall

Farah Noor was murdered by Linda and Charlotte Mulhall


While she enjoyed her notoriety and enhanced prison status in the Dochas, in Limerick Charlotte has to keep onside with another strong character, the paramilitary killer Rose Lynch.

The Limerick dissident republican is serving life for the murder of innocent van driver David Darcy in 2011 - falsely claimed as revenge for the murder of CIRA boss Liam Kenny.

Although the only person in prison for that killing, Lynch didn't act alone and at the time was in love with a man with a long record of dissident republican activity.

Lynch's trial heard the incident could only be described as "a premeditated, calculated and cold-blooded murder".

Darcy, who worked as a driver for a local butcher, was gunned down while sitting in his van at Cherry Orchard Avenue in November 2011.

Lynch is serving her time in the female wing in Limerick Prison and until recently was the only woman serving a life sentence there.


Rose Lynch

Rose Lynch

Rose Lynch

The other female lifers in the prison system are serving their time in the Dochas Centre in Dublin and include Sabrina Cummins, who was jailed for the grotesque torture and murder of vulnerable man Thomas Horan in 2014.

Described in court as "hard-nosed and brazen liar" Cummins did her best to point the finger of blame at her brother Kenneth, but the jury convicted her after he pleaded guilty.


They beat Mr Horan viciously, strangled him with a leather strap and even tried to poison him with households cleaning fluids.

He died with a plastic bag being held over his head as he desperately fought to save his life.

It was senseless murder, carried out to cover up a petty robbery at the Ringsend home of the 63-year-old who had never shown anything but kindness to the troubled brother and sister.

With her facial swastika tattoo Catherine O'Connor cut a memorable figure during her trial for her part in murdering two men in 24 hours.

In 2011 neighbours in the Co Cork town of Bandon spotted a body being dumped into the river from an apartment balcony.

Gardai called to the scene followed a trail of blood into a flat where they found O'Connor lying on a couch in just her underwear with blood on her hands and feet.


Double murder: Catherine O’Connor has a swastika on her face

Double murder: Catherine O’Connor has a swastika on her face

Double murder: Catherine O’Connor has a swastika on her face

Jonathan Duke's body was found in the river, having been stabbed dozens of times. Hours later they found O'Connor's ex, John Forrester, also tied up and dumped in the river.

It is claimed that another man launched a frenzied attacked on Forrester while Duke was later killed when he became aware of what happened.

Tanya Doyle had been working as a prostitute when she stabbed her husband, whom she was separated from, to death. His pleas for mercy were heard on his call to the emergency services.


She was 40 when she was jailed for life in 2013 for the 2009 murder of Paul Byrne at their home in Tallaght in which she knifed him 60 times.

Asked if she meant to stab him so many times she said: "I did yeah cos I wasn't going to be done for attempted murder, cos I could have had a fresh start with decent money. He wouldn't sign the house over."

Although diagnosed with a psychiatric condition, this was deemed not to have played a role in the murder, according to a medical witness.

Greta Dudko killed her mother at the home they shared in Clonsilla, Dublin on Christmas Eve in 2010 by slamming her head against a wall and hitting her with a bottle.

The mother-of-one and nurse had been struggling with alcohol and just weeks earlier left the house the family had shared with her husband, who had been having an affair.

On the evening of her mother's death Greta's husband had arrived to find her asleep and drunk and she agreed to let him take their young son to his home.

When Greta's mother Anna Butautiene arrived home an hour later a row broke out between the women, ending with her death.

Although Greta pleaded guilty to manslaughter she was convicted of murder and lost an appeal against the sentence in 2018.

Paula Farrell is the latest addition to the ranks of Ireland's female lifers, having been convicted in March this year of stabbing her partner to death.


A jury rejected her claim she was provoked when Wayne McQuillan sexually assaulted her and began to strangle her with his hands when she refused to have sex with him.

The mother-of-three stabbed him four times and when he staggered out of the house covered in blood she told passing teenagers not to call an ambulance.

In custody since 2015 and sentenced last March, Farrell has been allowed out of prison on various occasions to attend a confirmation and at Christmas.

Marta Herda has always maintained she is innocent of the murder of Csaba Orsos, who she was convicted of killing by deliberately driving her car off a pier to drown him.

The jury was told that she and Orsos were colleagues and that he had spent two years pursuing her, sending her texts and phoning, but she didn't feel the same way.

When her car plunged into the water at the South Quay, Arklow in 2013 the driver's window was the only one open.

She lost her appeal against the conviction and in 2018 the Supreme Court refused to hear a further appeal.

Regina Keogh is one of seven people serving life sentences for murders linked to the Hutch/Kinahan feud but she is the only woman.


She persuaded a friend to let her brother Jonathan Keogh and Thomas Fox use a flat in Cumberland Street in a plan to kill Gareth Hutch in 2016.

His murder was caught on CCTV cameras after he was targeted for being a member of the Hutch family.

Judge Tony Hunt said Ms Keogh, who had otherwise lived a "blameless life", was "unfortunate" to receive the same sentence as the two men.