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skull discovered Missing woman Tina Satchwell's DNA to be compared to bones found in Cork

A skull discovered on Tuesday is now thought to be that of a female and is believed to have been present at the scene near the Old Midleton to Youghal rail line for a period of less than 10 years.

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No trace of Tina Satchwell has yet been found

No trace of Tina Satchwell has yet been found

No trace of Tina Satchwell has yet been found

Gardai are to compare DNA from human remains located near Midleton in east Cork with those on record for a number of missing persons - including Youghal woman Tina Satchwell.

A skull discovered on Tuesday is now thought to be that of a female and is believed to have been present at the scene near the Old Midleton to Youghal rail line for a period of less than 10 years.

Nevertheless, sources have cautioned against speculation linking the discovery to missing Youghal woman Tina saying it is likely to be several weeks before formal identification is established.

Although investigators were initially hopefully that a jawbone near the scene would allow for a check through dental records, it is now understood the jawbone does not relate to the human remains and is instead that of an animal.

On Friday, further body parts were recovered at the scene including what are believed to tibia and fibula bones.

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Tina Satchwell disappeared from Youghal in 2017

Tina Satchwell disappeared from Youghal in 2017

Tina Satchwell disappeared from Youghal in 2017

Other items that have been recovered and are thought to relate to the remains are a crucifix on a chain and pieces of clothing believed to have once made up a dress.

Sources said the excavation of the site at Roxborough has now yielded multiple bones, with the skull initially discovered on Tuesday evening by workmen converting the railway into a €19.8m greenway.

The discovery of further bones and clothing has now led gardai to suspect they are dealing with the remains of a woman and a death which occurred within the last decade. The bones were removed to Cork University.

Tests were also conducted to determine if all the bones are from the same individual and DNA samples taken for comparison with the missing person's database.

A full list of missing persons from the greater east Cork area over the past 50 years is currently being compiled.

Detectives also hope forensic tests will determine whether the recovered remains at Roxborough were buried or may simply have been dumped into undergrowth.

The remains were found by the embankment of a railway line, just metres from a river and below a roadway bridge.

Gardai said they are now awaiting the results of expert tests which will include carbon dating and DNA sampling.

"Gardai are continuing to investigate the discovery of suspected skeletal remains found in Roxborough near Midleton, Co Cork at approximately 4.30pm on Tuesday, January 5," a spokesperson said.

"The area remains sealed off as gardai continue to carry out a technical examination. The State Pathologist has attended. The outcome of these examinations will determine the course of the investigation."

Among the highest profile missing person cases locally is that of Tina Satchwell, who was 45 when she vanished without trace from her home in nearby Youghal on March 20, 2017.

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Tina’s husband Richard

Tina’s husband Richard

Tina’s husband Richard

A major Garda search operation - including searches off the east Cork coast and a local woodland - failed to reveal any trace of Ms Satchwell's whereabouts.

Efforts to contact Tina's husband Richard for comment yesterday were unsuccessful.

Mr Satchwell gave a number of media interviews after his wife disappeared and said he firmly believed that she was still alive and he appealed to her to contact either him or family or friends just to let them know she was alive.

In an interview with the Sunday World, Richard (50), said he last saw Tina (45), at their home on the morning of March 20, shortly before he travelled to Aldi in Dungarvan.

He said that when he returned Tina was missing, along with two suitcases and €26,000 in cash. She did not take her phone or bank card with her.

She also didn't have a passport and Richard said she was afraid to fly. He said he only reported her missing four days later because he thought she may have gone off to clear her head for a few days. "I pray every night that she just turns up. I mean what I say - my arms are open."

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