Gardaí await DNA results on body-parts found in Kildare canal

The Garda Underwater Unit is searching parts of the Grand Canal following the discoveries

Gardaí await DNA results on body-parts found in Kildare canal

Image: Sean Defoe

The results of DNA tests on body parts found in the Grand Canal at Sallins are expected tomorrow.

Gardaí are trying to establish if the pieces are from murdered 33-year-old Kenneth O'Brien - whose torso was found in a suitcase on January 16th.

Members of the public made the latest find in County Kildare last night - while Garda follow-up searches revealed more evidence.

Chief Superintendent of the Kildare division Barry McPolin today told the press that they are concerned that the murderer is still at large.

“It is of concern to us certainly that the perpetrators of this crime have not been brought to book yet but we are determined that we will do so at the earliest opportunity.

“That’s why we emphasise the importance of receiving information from the public," he said.

The Gardaí say that finding the location of Kenneth O’Brien’s murder is key to the investigation.

They confirmed this afternoon that body parts were found by members of the public in the Grand Canal at Sallins.

The family of Kenneth O’Brien have thanked members of the public for any information given to gardaí in relation to the case.

Superintendent Gerry Wall says that they’re following over 300 lines of inquiry, but that finding the location of the murder is key.

“This is essential to our investigation. I would say that some person knows where that scene is

“They have that information in their possession.

“We’re asking them to bring that information forward, it’s of a considerable importance to our investigation,” he added.

The Garda Underwater Unit is searching parts of the Grand Canal in Kildare and Dublin after the reported discovery of body parts in the water.

The discovery of two bags is believed to have been made by members of the public yesterday evening.

It comes after the torso of 33-year-old Kenneth O’Brien was found in a suitcase in the canal near Ardclough more than a week ago.

An area near the canal in Sallins, Co Kildare has been sealed off - gardaí say a "contained item" was discovered there early yesterday evening. 

Another discovery was made on a stretch of the canal at Fonthill near Clondalkin in Co Dublin. The area has also been sealed off.

The items found will be forensically examined later this afternoon.

Alan Bailey is a former Detective Sergeant and cold case investigator.

Speaking on Lunchtime, Mr Bailey says the discovery of the two sites could prove crucial to the investigation.

Local Fianna Fáil Councillor James Lawless lives near the scene of the find in Sallins.

He says locals would notice strange activity in the area and are alarmed at the discovery along what he says is a very popular walking route.

Mr O'Brien's torso was found in a suitcase in the Grand Canal in Co Kildare, over a week ago.

In recent days they have searched parts of the canal and farmhouses near Ardclough, with the belief that Mr O'Brien once did some work at one of these locations.

While there were over 200 different lines of inquiry since this investigation began on the 16th, gardaí now say that they are following one particular line of inquiry.

Image: Kenneth O'Brien

Nicola Tallant, Investigations Editor with The Sunday World, earlier explained:

"Mr O'Brien has actually got links with the farm - he had worked down in one of the outhouses before [...] as a car mechanic - he had worked there before, and he had actually told his family that he was going there on the Friday that he went missing.

"So that is a very, very strong link to the area and the investigation is now going to focus on any links that some West Dublin criminals would have".