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Probe into dad's stab death has 140 witness statements, court told

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Christina Anderson has been too unwell to attend court

Christina Anderson has been too unwell to attend court

Christina Anderson has been too unwell to attend court

The garda investigation into the murder of father-of-seven Garreth Kelly is a complex one involving 140 witness statements and electronic evidence, a court has heard.

Prosecutors were granted another adjournment in the case against mother-of-three Christina Anderson (38), who is charged with killing Mr Kelly on a street outside her home more than four months ago.

Mr Kelly died after he was stabbed while trying to start his car at Brownsbarn Wood, Kingswood, last February 25.

Judge Bryan Smyth further remanded Ms Anderson in custody in her absence at Dublin District Court yesterday for the directions of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

She has been too unwell to attend court since she first appeared on the charge in February.

Garda Sergeant Niall Murphy sought another two week adjournment.

Defence solicitor Michael Kelleher said he appreciated it was a "most serious charge", but the case was going into its fifth month without directions and no file had yet been sent to the DPP.

Any charge of this nature was complex, but he did not think his client's case was "particularly complicated" for this type of offence.

"We have somebody in custody who is not terribly well, there should be some level of priority," Mr Kelleher said.

He asked if the court could exercise any influence on this.

Judge Smyth said he did not know if the Covid-19 situation might be contributing to any delay.

Mr Kelleher said the defence had not been given any reason, and he was obliged to ask why the case kept being put back.

Undue

"There may be valid reasons," he said, but he believed it was at the point where he needed to know what they were.

Sgt Murphy said it was "quite a large" and complex investigation with 140 witness statements and analysis of electronic evidence. He said the prosecuting sergeant would say there was no undue delay.

Judge Smyth said there was a significant number of statements, as well as analysis of electronic data, and "these things take time".

Mr Kelleher said that "at some point it becomes too long".

Judge Smyth said he could not see that it had become too long at this stage.

He remanded the accused in custody in her absence to July 22.

Mr Kelleher applied for legal aid, saying the accused's husband was working and they had three children.

There was no garda objection, and Mr Kelleher asked the judge to backdate the legal aid.

The court had earlier ordered the accused to be medically and psychiatrically assessed.

Detective Sergeant Dara Kenny previously said Ms Ander- son had made no reply when charged.

Mr Kelly, from Tallaght, had been living in Clondalkin and was believed to have been staying at a house in the Brownsbarn estate at the time of his death.