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Husband charged with wife's murder is attacked

A man was attacked and knocked to the ground by a jeering crowd as he arrived at court charged with the murder of his Belfast-born wife.

Oliver Kierans (57), of Bailieboro in Co Cavan, appeared at a special sitting of Cavan District Court last night charged with murdering Patricia Kierans (54) at their former home in the town last Thursday.

Mrs Kierans was originally from west Belfast.

Her family moved across the border at the start of the Troubles.

When the defendant arrived by car at the front of Cavan Courthouse at 6.30pm flanked by gardai he was set upon, heckled and jeered by a small crowd which resulted in both him and a garda being knocked to the ground and a struggle ensued to get him into the court building.

Mr Kierans suffered a bloody nose and his glasses were broken.

Inside the court a Detective Sergeant stated that she arrested the defendant at 3.20am last Friday on suspicion of the murder of Mrs Kierans involving the use of a firearm.

She stated that after his arrest the defendant said: "I will admit I'm sorry."

The officer said that Kierans made no reply to the charge of murder when it was put to him.

Judge Sean McBride said: "Whilst in custody I recommend a suicide watch as there is a risk of self-harm."

The judge also recommended that the defendant undergo a physical and psychiatric examination.

Kierans sat in handcuffs alone on one side of the courtroom dressed in a dark green jacket, blue shirt, blue jeans and black shoes. On the opposite side of the courtroom sat his three sons and daughter who have only just travelled home from Australia.

He was remanded in custody until Friday.

Belfast Telegraph