Graham Dwyer’s murder conviction was not primarily based on evidence from his cell phone

Graham Dwyer's murder conviction was not primarily based on evidence from his cell phone

Tech Highlights:

  • The European court will now enter a deliberative phase, with a ruling expected some time before March. After that, the Supreme Court in Dublin will finalise its judgment in Dwyer’s challenge to Ireland’s data retention law. Abandon all hope, ye who still believe you’ve a chance of winning the Lotto. The investigator, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that appeal judges in Ireland will take into account that gardaí were not in breach of any phone data laws at the time of their investigation. “At the time, there was no conscious breach of the legislation. It was lawful then. That is an important legal point and will be taken into account. No evidence was obtained improperly.”

  • According to a major investigator, Graham Dwyer was convicted of the murder of Elaine O’Hara based on a variety of evidence, and the case against him was not only based on mobile phone data. Dwyer’s (49) hopes of having his sentence overturned were enhanced last week by specialist legal advice from a European Union Court of Justice advisor (CJEU). The keeping of mobile phone data without restriction could only be justified in circumstances involving national security, according to Advocate-General Manuel Campos Sánchez-Bordona, and could not be justified for the prosecution of crimes.

Other crucial elements behind the Cork architect’s conviction for the murder of the vulnerable childcare worker was heard at his 2015 trial. At the nine-week trial, a DNA profile in the form of a semen stain that matched Dwyer’s DNA were recovered from a mattress in Elaine O’Hara’s apartment. Daily Digest Newsletter. Get ahead of the day with the morning headlines at 7.30am and Fionnán Sheahan’s exclusive take on the day’s news every afternoon, with our free daily newsletter. The jury also heard testimony from witnesses, including Darci Day in the US, that Dwyer’s fantasy was to stab a woman to death during sex. She also told the jury, who unanimously found him guilty, that he would kill Elaine O’Hara if she asked him.

Dwyer, an architect, was jailed for life for the murder of Ms O’Hara (36), in a case that relied heavily on phone data. In the High Court in 2018 he successfully challenged the law under which his data was retained and seized, an outcome the State appealed to the Supreme Court. Ms O’Hara went missing in August 2012, after last being seen in Shanganagh Park, Co Dublin. Her skeletal remains were found on Killakee Mountain in Rathfarnham, south Dublin, on September 13, 2013.

The source stressed that there were “many stages to go” in this complex legal case. He added that the developments last week would be having a “tremendous impact” on Graham Dwyer’s victims. “The fallout from something like this will have a tremendous impact on his victims — the family of Elaine O’Hara, and also his former wife and children, because they were also victims,” he added

Gardaí discovered Ms O’Hara had been a member of an adult fetish website. Investigators linked her account to Dwyer’s, and discovered they had communicated since 2007. The jury found Dwyer had stabbed her to death for his own sexual gratification, following a sadistic relationship. Phone data played an important role in Dwyer’s conviction for murder. It placed him close to the scene of her killing and linked him to lurid text messages.

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