case adjourned | 

Brazilian man accused of murdering his former partner Bruna Fonseca (28) remanded in custody

Miller Pacheco is charged with the murder of Ms Fonseca at an address at Liberty Street in the early hours of New Year's Day

Miller Pacheco (29)© Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision


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

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 last week.

Mr Pacheco is charged with the murder of Ms Fonseca at an address at Liberty Street in the early hours of New Year's Day contrary to Common Law.

The defendant has an address at Liberty Street in Cork city centre.

He appeared on remand before Cork District Court via video-link.

Judge Olann Kelleher was told by Sergeant Gearoid Davis that gardaí are awaiting instructions in the case from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Mr Pacheco does not speak English and was assisted during the brief hearing by a Portuguese translator.

Gardaí applied for the matter to be adjourned until January 30 next to allow time for the DPP to consider detailed instructions in the matter.

Defence solicitor Frank Buttimer confirmed his client understood the proceedings.

He said his client had been made aware that the case file in the matter would not be finalised by gardaí for the DPP for some time.

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.

Judge Kelleher remanded Mr Pacheco in ongoing custody to appear again before Cork District Court on January 30 by video-link.

A Portuguese translator was again certified for the hearing.

Bruna Fonseca (28)

Mr Pacheco has already been granted free legal aid.

At the previous court hearing, it was ordered that Mr Pacheco receive all necessary medical attention while in custody.

Ms Fonseca, who was from Formiga in Brazil, travelled to Ireland last September 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 6.30am 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 by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster.

Gardaí have withheld the post mortem findings for operational reasons. However, it was 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 before moving to Ireland.

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.

A special public appeal raised over €50,000 for her funeral costs and final arrangements are now being made to repatriate her remains back to her family in Brazil.

Over 200 people including Tánaiste Micheál Martin attended a special vigil for Ms Fonseca on Sunday at The Lough which was Ms Fonseca's favourite part of the city.

The ongoing garda investigation includes an analysis of hours of CCTV footage from premises around Cork city centre, door-to-door inquiries and exhaustive forensic tests at the Liberty Street flat.

Social media postings are also set to play a critical role in the garda investigation in terms of tracking Ms Fonseca's last known movements and who she was with on New Year's Eve.

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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