herald

Friday 14 December 2018

Fragments of clothing found in woods during search for missing Tina

Richard Satchwell
Richard Satchwell

Gardai have sent items, including fragments of clothing, found in the search for missing Tina Satchwell (45) to the State Laboratory for forensic testing.

The items were found during the search of Mitchel's Wood outside Castlemartyr in east Cork for Ms Satchwell, who vanished last year.

However, a garda source said it was still unclear if the items are connected to the case.

It is understood a quantity of material was illegally dumped at the sprawling area over recent years and detectives want the forensic tests conducted as a precautionary measure.

Search

Gardai, supported by Defence Forces engineering units and Search Dogs UK, now have combed more than half the 40-acre search zone over the past eight days.

The search has been extended to include streams, rivers and bogland in the area.

These areas will be examined with the support of the Garda Sub Aqua Unit.

Gardai now have 250 different lines of inquiry in their search for Ms Satchwell - an increase of 30 on last week.

The revelation came as Ms Satchwell's husband Richard said that the discrediting of a recent witness was like "having a bucket of cold water chucked over me".

Mr Satchwell also said his wife's best friend is convinced Ms Satchwell is now living in the UK. He further claimed his wife was memorising UK social security numbers in the time before she vanished.

Mr Satchwell has repeatedly said €26,000 in cash as well as two suitcases and clothing vanished from their home on the day his wife disappeared.

Garda sources have now confirmed that a man who claimed he spotted Ms Satchwell near a Dublin beach last January was "well-intentioned but mistaken or confused".

Ms Satchwell disappeared without trace from her home in Youghal, Co Cork, on March 20, 2017.

The potential Dublin lead is not being treated as credible.

Mr Satchwell referred to the man's information on RTE's Ray D'Arcy Show last Saturday night - but it emerged the same individual had offered information about the case of missing schoolboy Philip Cairns.

Garda sources said the man was "genuine but either mistaken or confused".

Blitz

English-born truck driver Mr Satchwell said he was continuing with a blitz of broadcast interviews in the hope it would generate further leads in the case.

He said he was very upset to learn that the Dublin lead was not a breakthrough.

"It is like having a bucket of cold water chucked over me," he told RedFM.

"But I am hopeful that everything we are doing now is going to bring more and more people forward."

It has emerged that Ms Satchwell, in the days before her disappearance, informed some people that: "I would never do anything to hurt Richard - I love him too much."

Mr Satchwell insisted he does not believe his wife was having an affair, merely that she was battling depression and may have needed some time away from the marriage.

Mr Satchwell also confirmed yesterday he had been in prison.

"I was caught... working while claiming social welfare. That was here [in Ireland]," he told RedFM.

"As regards being in jail? Want the truth? I think I would sooner be there than where I am now. The media don't care about my feelings or Tina's feelings - they just want to make me look bad," he added.

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