Irish man arrested in connection with death of Limerick student on Greek island

Police detain 20-year-old male following death of Niall O’Brien (22) on Ios

Greek police are questioning an Irish man in connection with the death of a Limerick student on the island of Ios on Monday.

Niall O'Brien (22), from Castletroy, died after being struck by another man, local police said.

The alleged assault took place in the island’s largest town, Chora.

A 20-year-old man was arrested by police and is being questioned on suspicion of striking Mr O’Brien “with his hands”, causing his death, police said.


A police statement said the alleged assault resulted in Mr O’Brien “falling on the road”. Mr O’Brien was brought by ambulance to the local health centre where he was pronounced dead.

Police said investigating officers went to the scene of the alleged assault, where they arrested the suspect .

The statement said he was to be “taken to the Naxos Prosecutor’s Office”, where he may face charges, and a forensic examination was ordered.

A postmortem is due to be conducted on the body to help determine the cause of death.

Mr O'Brien was a hurler with Broadford GAA in southeast Co Clare, and a member and employee of Castletroy Golf Club in Limerick.

He had been holidaying with a group of 20 friends on the island.

The Department of Foreign Affairs said it was aware of the case and was providing “consular assistance” to the deceased’s family.

Mr O'Brien was the second person from Limerick to die on Ios in a little more than a month. Darren Whelan (23), from Kildimo, Co Limerick, a hurler with Kildimo-Pallaskenry GAA Club, was holidaying with friends on the Greek island when he fell to his death on July 11th.

Paying tribute, Broadford GAA club said: “It is with a broken heart that Broadford Hurling Club are in deep mourning at the sad passing of one of our great characters and players, Niall O’Brien.

“Niall has played all grades with the club, having only lined out for a win with our adult teams as recently as last week.

“Niall was an extremely talented prospect and we will never forget his ‘man of the match’ winning performance when scoring 1-11 to win the U21 B county final in 2019.

"Having completed three years, Niall was about to enter his final year in University of Limerick doing financial maths. Niall's large circle of friends will remember him as a hugely popular, larger than life character."

Offering condolences to Mr O'Brien's parents, Mike and Anne, and his brothers Cian, Eoin, and Alan, a club spokesperson added: "Niall was at the centre of every gathering, whether it be sporting or socially, and his good humour and witty comments kept everybody entertained. Broadford and Monaleen will be a much sadder place without him. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam."