Belfast Telegraph

Poker game led to fatal stabbing of Marek Swider in Cavan, say neighbours

A stabbing victim in Co Cavan is believed to have died following a dispute over a card game.

The Polish man, named locally as Marek Swider, is said to have been living in Dublin Street, Ballyjamesduff with several other men from Poland.

The 40-year-old victim received serious stab wounds in an incident outside the property at around 11pm on Sunday night.

Traces of blood could still be seen around the front door the following day as gardai continued to investigate the death.

Neighbours believe a group of men were playing cards in the house when a confrontation occurred.

“They were all playing poker on New Year’s Eve and at one stage an argument broke out,” said one neighbour, who did not want to be named.

“It then fell out onto the street and unfortunately one of the men ended up getting stabbed.

“There was never any trouble in that house before and it’s very sad to hear something like this happening so close by,” she said.

It is understood that the victim worked in Liffey Meats, an agri-food company in Ballyjamesduff.

A former co-worker and neighbour of the victim described him as a “very nice man”.

“I still can’t believe it,” said the South African national.

“I was out last night, but when I came home I saw the police everywhere and knew something bad had happened. When I found out that a person I used to work with had died I felt a lot of sadness — it’s really terrible.

“He was a very nice man and an extremely hard worker.

“He didn’t have any children and shared his house with about five other Polish men,” he added.

The victim was rushed to Cavan General Hospital but was pronounced dead shortly after 9.30am yesterday.

Gardai have contacted his family in Poland and a family liaison officer has been appointed.

The scene was preserved for a technical examination last night, with the Garda Technical Bureau attending the incident.

“The post mortem has concluded and for operational reasons the results are not being disclosed at this stage,” said a Garda spokesperson.

No arrests had been made by last night.

Officers made door-to-door enquiries throughout the day.

Gardai also appealed for anyone who was driving on the Dublin road, Ballyjamesduff between 10.30pm and midnight on New Year’s Eve to contact them.

They are also calling on the Polish community or any member of the public with information to contact garda in Baileboro on 042-9694570, the Garda confidential telephone line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda station.

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