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Dublin: 1 °C Wednesday 26 February, 2020

Belfast man to serve minimum of eight years for murdering his mother

Declan O’Neill (29) pleaded guilty to the murdering Anne O’Neill in 2017.

 Anne O’Neill
Anne O’Neill
Image: PSNI

A BELFAST MAN has been handed a life sentence today at Laganside Crown Court for murdering his mother in 2017.

Declan O’Neill (29) pleaded guilty last month to murdering 47-year-old Anne O’Neill in the back garden of her parent’s house in Belfast on 21 October 2017.

The 29-year-old will serve a minimum of eight years before being eligible for parole. 

Speaking about the sentencing, Detective Inspector Joanne Harris, from the PSNI’s Major Investigation Team, said it was a “very sad case” and offered her sympathies to Anne’s family. 

“This has been a long, protracted and harrowing case for all concerned.  No matter what the circumstances are that led to the murder of Anne, no-one has the right to take another person’s life.   

“I cannot imagine the distress and suffering Anne’s daughter must be feeling today as she mourns for her mother, whilst also having to come to terms with the fact that her brother will be serving eight years in prison for their mother’s murder.

My sympathies also go to Anne’s parents who are dealing with the loss of their daughter and their grandson spending years in prison.

Harris added that whilst today’s sentencing will never bring Anne back “I hope that it will bring some closure to those who are left behind after what has been a very traumatic two years for all concerned.”

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Adam Daly

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