Suspect's request delays release of Karen's remains
THE man accused of murdering Irish student Karen Buckley (24) has exercised his right under Scottish law for a second post-mortem examination, forcing her family to postpone funeral plans.
Alexander Pacteau (21) will appear again before a Glasgow Sheriff today having been charged with murder last week.
He was also charged with attempting to defeat the ends of justice and was remanded in custody.
The Herald has learned that the second post-mortem examination won't be concluded in Glasgow until later today.
It had been expected that Karen's remains would be released to her family by today, but it is now unlikely to happen until this weekend.
The logistics and bureaucracy involved in having her remains repatriated to her native Mourneabbey in north Cork mean her body now won't be back in Ireland until Sunday or possibly Monday.
Mourneabbey sources indicated that Karen's Requiem Mass will not now take place before next Tuesday at the earliest.
John (62) and Marian (61) Buckley and their three sons, Brendan (32), Kieran (28) and Damien (27), are liaising with the Irish Consul in Edinburgh and Glasgow police about the repatriation of the student occupational therapist's remains.
Two airlines, including Stobart Air/Aer Lingus Regional, have offered to assist the Buckley family with special flight arrangements to bring Karen's body back to Cork Airport.
Under Scottish law, a second post-mortem examination can be ordered if requested by a defendant.
Until the issue was clarified, the Glasgow authorities could not release Karen's body.
Karen vanished after a night out in The Sanctuary nightclub on Dumbarton Road, in the early hours of April 12. Her body was found on an isolated farm north of Glasgow on April 15.
It has also emerged that a senior garda on holidays in Scotland helped Glasgow police liaise with the Buckley family during the search for their daughter.
Mourneabbey community groups have now offered volunteer services to support the funeral arrangements ranging from car-parking stewards to drivers for airport shuttles.
Karen's Requiem Mass will be celebrated at St Michael the Archangel's Church in Analeentha where she made her Holy Communion and Confirmation.