A woman in her fifties has been released without charge after being arrested yesterday in relation to the 1984 Kerry Babies case.
The woman, and a man in his sixties, were arrested on Thursday evening on suspicion of murder and held at garda stations in the south of the country under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984.
The man remains in custody and can be held for up to 24 hours.
The body of a baby boy, later named “Baby John”, aged five days old, was found with 28 stab wounds at White Strand, Cahersiveen, County Kerry on 14 April, 1984.
The high-profile discovery became known as the “Kerry Babies” case, and would lead to a State apology over the treatment of a local woman.
Joanne Hayes was arrested and charged after Baby John’s body was found in 1984, but the charge was later dropped and a tribunal of inquiry was set up to probe the handling of her case by gardaíí
Advances in DNA profiling then confirmed that Ms Hayes, as she always maintained, was not Baby John’s mother.
In 2018, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, then-Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan and An Garda Síochána apologised to Ms Hayes.
In January 2018, An Garda Síochána announced a review into the death of Baby John, and since then its Kerry Division has carried out an “extensive” investigation, supported by the Garda Serious Crime Review Team.
Hundreds of people have been interviewed and more than 560 lines of inquiry have been initiated.
In September 2018, Baby John’s remains were exhumed and taken to the morgue at University Hospital Kerry in Tralee for examination, and were reinterred later that afternoon.
In September 2021, gardaí in Kerry exhumed Baby John’s remains to obtain a DNA sample.
Thursday’s arrests were described as a significant development in the cold case review of the investigation by the lead investigator, Superintendent Flor Murphy.
A spokesperson for An Garda Síochána said on Friday evening that they had no further comment at this time.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Killarney Garda Station (064) 667 1160 the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666 111 or any Garda Station.