Man appears in court charged in connection with murder of Frankie Dunne in Cork

Francis 'Frankie' Dunne was found dead on the grounds of a derelict house on Boreenmanna Road in the city on December 28th, 2019.
Man appears in court charged in connection with murder of Frankie Dunne in Cork

29-year-old Ionut Cosmin Nichoclescu from Romania pictured at Cork District Court this evening. He has been charged with the murder of 64-year-old Frankie Dunne in Cork in December 2019. Pic Cork Courts Limited

A Romanian man, aged in his late twenties, has appeared before a special sitting of a Cork court charged in connection with the murder of a 64-year-old father of three in the city in December 2019.

Francis "Frankie" Dunne late of Churchfield Avenue, Knocknaheeny in Cork was found dead on the grounds of a derelict house on Boreenmanna Road in the city on December 28th, 2019.

Det Garda Alan McCarthy gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution. 

He said Mr Ionut Cosmin Nicholescu said “I didn’t do that” when the charge was put to him following a caution. 

Mr Nicholescu is charged that on a date unknown between the 27th and the 28th of December 2019 at Castle Greine on Boreenmanna Road in Cork city he did murder Frankie Dunne contrary to common law.

Francis 'Frankie' Dunne was found dead on the grounds of a derelict house on Boreenmanna Road in the city on December 28th, 2019.
Francis 'Frankie' Dunne was found dead on the grounds of a derelict house on Boreenmanna Road in the city on December 28th, 2019.

Detective Garda McCarthy said that he arrested Mr Nicholescu at 3.37pm today at Dublin Airport. The 29-year-old was arrested on foot of a European Arrest Warrant.

Gardaí applied for a remand in custody for Mr Nicholescu who has an address in Branista Village, Branista Commune, Damovita in Romania.

Judge Olann Kelleher remanded the defendant in custody.

Mr Nicholescu will appear before the court again on December 9th by video link. 

Appropriate medical assistance will be given to the defendant whilst free legal aid was granted by Judge Kelleher following an application by Mr Nicholescu’s solicitor Elaine Audley. Ms Audley said her client is unemployed.

Mr Dunne was last seen alive on December 27th, 2019 leaving Cork Simon's high support homeless centre, Clanmornin House on the Boreenmanna Road on the southside of the city. He lived onsite with ten other formerly homeless people. He also received support from his family.

At Mr Dunne's funeral mass at St Mary's on the Hill church, in Knocknaheeny in Cork, his nieces Breda and Yvonne said that the family would forever cherish their memories of seeing Frankie the Christmas before he died.

Breda told mourners Frankie was a "character" who touched the lives of all he met. He loved horse racing, fixing broken phones and second hand shops.

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