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Post-mortem suggests no foul play in Poland death of James Nolan

Prosecutors in Poland say the results of an autopsy suggests the soccer fan’s drowning was a tragic accident.

James Nolan's brother-in-law Gareth Dudley and uncle Pat Nolan speak to reporters in Bydgoszcz last night.
James Nolan's brother-in-law Gareth Dudley and uncle Pat Nolan speak to reporters in Bydgoszcz last night.
Image: Roman Bosiacki/AP

A POST-MORTEM carried out on the body of Irish soccer fan James Nolan, whose body was recovered from a river in the Polish city of Bydgoszcz on Wednesday, suggest his death was a tragic accident.

Polish prosecutors say the autopsy results show the 21-year-old student had drowned, with no evidence of any injuries which could have resulted from foul play.

Hundreds of city residents spent yesterday on the banks of the river Brda where Nolan was found, in an outpouring of sympathy with Nolan’s grieving family.

The Blessington native’s brother, cousins and uncle arrived in Poland late on Wednesday to formally identify James’s body, after it was recovered from the river earlier that day.

Cafes and restaurants in the centre of the city have decorated their windows with Irish flags, as well as pictures of James adorned with black ribbons.

Last night James’s brother Andrew thanked the people of the city for their solidarity, saying: “Without this kind of support, it’d be very difficult to get through this situation.”

In remarks carried on RTÉ News, the family said they took comfort from the fact that foul play appeared to have been ruled out.

An Irish flag is also flying at half-mast outside the city hall, from where the city mayor Rafal Bruski made a formal request to UEFA to offer a minute’s silence ahead of one of the four Euro 2012 quarter-finals. Nolan had been in Poland to support the Republic of Ireland team at the tournament.

Local CCTV footage recorded footage of Nolan leaving a bar, where he had been drinking with friends and watching football on Saturday night, in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The bar in which they were drinking is less than 300m from the river from which he was recovered.

Prosecutors are to continue to check CCTV footage to clarify the circumstances of Nolan’s drowning, but believe in the meantime that Nolan’s drowning was entirely accidental.

Read: Mayor of Bydgoszcz asks UEFA for minute’s silence to remember James Nolan

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Gavan Reilly

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