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Gardaí outside the property on Tuesday MICHAEL MAC SWEENEY/PROVISION
east Cork

Dental records confirm Tina Satchwell's remains, suspect remains under questioning

Tina Satchwell went missing in 2017 – the latest breakthrough comes following a detailed case review which looked at flaws in witness statements.

LAST UPDATE | Oct 13th 2023, 12:48 PM

GARDAÍ ARE CONTINUING to interview a man on suspicion of the murder of Tina Satchwell as it now looks like crucial new statements led to the discovery of her remains.

Gardaí have now confirmed, through dental records, that the remains discovered in the house are those of Tina. 

It has emerged that critical statements around claims of work carried out at the property are forming a major part of the investigation and new witnesses have been interviewed.  

The man, who is in his 50s, had been arrested already this week as gardaí searched a house in Youghal in east Cork. This was the property from where Tina was reported missing and where she lived. 

He was re-arrested yesterday as a search team, using construction equipment, discovered her human remains under concrete flooring and near a stairs inside the property.

It is understood the remains were wrapped in plastic wrap. 

Tina went missing in 2017 and gardaí are operating off the assumption that the remains discovered are those of Tina Satchwell, but they have not yet been formally identified.

While the search at Tina’s former home is ongoing, gardaí have now commenced a second search at a location between Youghal and Killeagh, Co Cork. It is understood the suspect who has been arrested had access to a premises at the second location.

The gardaí have also been examining a car and a truck in their investigations.

Gardaí regularly carry out reviews of long-term investigations – it is understood that a so-called cold case reassessment has identified crucial new evidence that led them to the house in Youghal.

While there is local speculation that drain works in the area were part of the breakthrough, sources have said that it is likely that a detailed review of the case had a greater impact. 

This review gave particular focus to statements given previously and they identified a contradiction in particular information provided by a person who was previously interviewed. 

The gardaí gathered fresh statements and this ultimately led investigators to a new forensic strategy and ultimately to the house in Youghal.

The review was led by a detective who had taken several months working through the various interviews. A senior garda was, in recent weeks, brought in from outside the immediate Cork North Division also to assist in the investigation.

Earlier in the week sources told The Journal that investigators had begun to examine under floor boards, as well as under footpaths outside the house.

Specialist search dogs, known as cadaver dogs, trained to detect the presence of human remains were also used during the search.

The search became more focused and by yesterday morning gardaí had removed concrete from underneath a stairwell and it was here where they found remains they have identified as that of Tina Satchwell.  

The man who has been arrested is being detained at Cobh Garda Station.

members-of-an-garda-at-a-property-in-youghal-which-being-searched-in-the-case-of-missing-co-cork-woman-tina-satchwell-gardai-investigating-her-disappearance-have-found-skeletal-remains-at-the-proper Gardaí at the scene of the discovery in Youghal. Alamy Stock Photo Alamy Stock Photo

Superintendent Adrian Gamble had told a press conference yesterday that the family of Tina Satchwell continue to be updated on the progress of the investigation, and a family liaison officer has been appointed.

Superintendent Adrian Gamble from Midleton Garda Station said: “My thoughts and the thoughts of the investigation team continue to be with them at this difficult time.”

He also appealed for anyone who may have information on the murder of Tina Satchwell to come forward.

“No matter how insignificant you may think that information is, contact the investigation team at Midleton Garda Station on 021 462 1550, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any garda station,” he said.

Tina (45) went missing from her home on 20 March 2017. Gardaí yesterday said the investigation had been “upgraded to murder”.

Sources have said that it is anticipated that gardaí will ask the Director of Public Prosecutions for guidance on a potential charge later today.