Bullets found in wall ‘similar’ to those that killed Marioara Rostas

Ballistics expert gives evidence at trial of man accused of killing Romanian woman (18)

Alan Wilson (35) is on trial at the Central Criminal Court charged with the murder of Romanian woman Marioara Rostas in 2008.

Alan Wilson (35) is on trial at the Central Criminal Court charged with the murder of Romanian woman Marioara Rostas in 2008.

 

There was a lock on the outside of a bedroom in the house where teenager Marioara Rostas is alleged to have been murdered, a jury has heard this morning.

Bullets recovered from the 18-year-old’s head could have come from the same weapon as bullets found in the house, which had been the home of the accused man’s sister, the court was also told.

The Central Criminal Court was hearing evidence from a scenes-of-crime examiner this morning in the trial of the 35-year-old man charged with murdering the Romanian girl.

Alan Wilson of New Street Gardens in Dublin is charged with murdering Ms Rostas at a house on Brabazon Street, in the Coombe area of the city. He has pleaded not guilty to her murder between January 7th and January 8th, 2008.

The trial has already heard her body was found in a shallow grave in Kippure on the Wicklow border in January 2012. She had died of four bullet wounds to her head.

Ballistics expert detective Garda Shane Curran testified that he examined the three-storey house on Brabazon Street on October 31st 2008. The court heard the house had been rented to Mr Wilson’s sister, Maxine Wilson.

Detective Garda Curran said much of the house was fire or smoke-damaged, including a living room on the first floor.

There were two holes in the wall here, at a height of five feet (1.5m), containing badly-damaged .22inch calibre discharged bullets. They had gone through the wallpaper and were embedded in the plaster, he said.

He retrieved and examined the bullets and, in his opinion, the damage to them was consistent with them having been discharged “from a lethal firearm at high velocity”.

He said there were two rooms on the top floor, one of which was devoid of furniture apart from a wardrobe. There was a sliding latch carrier, minus the bolt, on the outside of the door of this room.

He said there was a clear accelerant trail here, where somebody had poured an accelerant and lit it. The trail continued into the hall.

In 2012, Garda Curran compared the bullets from the wall with the bullet fragments recovered during the post-mortem exam on Ms Rostas’s body.

He said they were of the same calibre, were similar in appearance and contained the same class characteristics. They were fired from a similar firearm, but due to the damage, he could not say they were discharged from the same firearm.

Under cross examination by the defence he said in his opinion, the two bullets found in the wall had resulted from direct shots at the wall.

“They didn’t pass through any intervening medium,” he said. “They didn’t cause the injuries to Marioara Rostas.”

He explained that they could have been discharged from the same firearm used to kill her and at the same time, but he was not in a position to say for certain.

The prosecution has already told the jury it will hear from Fergus O’Hanlon. He told gardai that Mr Wilson called him to the house in January 2008 and showed him a corpse, saying: “She was a witness”.

He told detectives that he then assisted the accused in burying her body.

The trial continues this afternoon before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury of 10 men and two women.