Fresh appeal for information on murder of Tipperary father-of-eight

William Delaney last seen in January 2019 shortly after leaving hospital

Gardaí have launched a fresh appeal for information on the murder of father-of-eight William Delaney on what would have been his 59th birthday.

The Tipperary man was last seen at around 3pm in Monasterevin, Co Kildare on Wednesday, January 30th, 2019.

He had left the Midland Regional Hospital in Portlaoise, Co Laois, where he had been a patient, earlier that morning, and was seen collecting his social welfare cheque in the town's post office. He was spotted in Monasterevin, Co Kildare later that day.

Mr Delaney had taken time away on his own in the past, meaning his absence did not cause concern initially. He was not reported missing until March 6th, 2019.

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The matter was initially treated as a missing persons case until gardaí received a call from a woman who said she had heard someone confess to murdering Mr Delaney.

Gardaí now believe Mr Delaney was murdered and, on what would have been his 59th birthday, are renewing an appeal for anyone with information to come forward.

He was last spotted in Monasterevin visiting a relative on the old Cork-Dublin Road. “The relation wasn’t at home but William was seen outside the premises which is situated on the old Cork-Dublin Road directly opposite a local landmark known as the Hazel Hotel” the Garda said in a statement.

Gardaí received information in June 2019 that Mr Delaney had been killed and his body buried in a shallow grave near the Rock of Dunamaise. However a search of the area at the time did not turn up anything of note.

“Gardaí are appealing to the community and would like to thank them for their assistance so far, however Gardaí believe that people in the community have information and have not yet come forward.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crimestoppers on 1800 250 025.

There has been a significant activity in the case in recent weeks. Two weeks ago a suspect, aged in his 20s and from the midlands, was arrested and held for questioning.

He was later released without charge. Gardaí said they are preparing a file for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

His was the third arrest in the case after a man in his 30s and a teenage girl were detained for questioning in June 2019, though they were also released without charge. Despite a two-year investigation into the case, nobody has been charged in connection with his murder.

Lands in Co Laois were sealed off and searched in recent weeks as part of the Garda investigation team’s efforts to find the dead man’s body.

However, that search also yielded nothing and the investigation to locate the remains and to bring the killer to justice has been continuing.

Conor Gallagher

Conor Gallagher

Conor Gallagher is Crime Correspondent of The Irish Times