Body of Co Limerick woman exhumed after 20 years

Gardaí receive new information about death of Margot Seery who was found dead in a flat in 1994

Workmen at St Mary’s Graveyard, Rathkeale, Co Limerick where the remains of Margot Seery are interred. Photograph: Liam Burke/Press 22

Workmen at St Mary’s Graveyard, Rathkeale, Co Limerick where the remains of Margot Seery are interred. Photograph: Liam Burke/Press 22

 

The remains of a Co Limerick woman, who died almost 20 years ago, were exhumed and removed for a new postmortem yesterday.

The process to exhume the remains of Margot Seery (42) from St Mary’s burial ground in Rathkeale, Co Limerick, began shortly after 7.30am yesterday.

It followed new information received by gardaí about the death of the woman who was found dead in a flat in Rathmines, Dublin, on October 8th, 1994, after a night out socialising with friends.

An inquest into her death concluded she died of asphyxiation after choking. Nobody else was sought as part of the investigation and gardaí did not believe foul play had occurred.

However, during the summer, a man walked into a Dublin city Garda station and claimed he killed the Limerick woman.

The man, who is understood to have a history of psychiatric problems, brought detectives to the flat where Ms Seery died.

It is believed he outlined the events of the night to gardaí, including how he met her and spent the evening socialising with her.

Ms Seery was buried with relatives in the St Mary’s burial ground. Shortly after 7.30am yesterday, the family plot was screened off from public view by large plastic sheeting and local gravediggers, overseen by members of the Garda Technical Bureau, began the exhumation process.

Three gardaí secured the area which was designated a crime scene.

The Deputy State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis, accompanied by a forensic anthropologist, arrived at the graveyard shortly after midday and carried out a preliminary examination at the scene.

Less than two hours later he left and Ms Seery’s remains were brought out shortly afterwards in a hearse.

A postmortem was carried out at University Hospital Limerick yesterday in which Dr Curtis was attempting to determine whether Ms Seery died a violent death and if she was strangled, as is alleged by the man who claims he killed her.

She was reinterred last night.

The results of the postmortem will determine the course of the Garda investigation, which is being led by Det Insp George McGeary of Terenure Garda station.

 

It will also determine whether the case will be reopened as a criminal inquiry.

In Rathkeale earlier yesterday, West Limerick coroner Brendan Nix said the matter was part of an ongoing Garda investigation and an exhumation order granted by the Minister for Justice.

“It is ongoing and will be ongoing for some time,” Mr Nix said.