GARDAÍ continue to consider new evidence in the case of Sophie Toscan du Pantier, brutally beaten and killed outside her West Cork cottage the day before Christmas Eve 1996.
Gardaí held a press conference in West Cork earlier this month (December) where they appealed for information.
In June 2022 a special unit of An Garda Síochána opened a ‘cold case’ review of all the evidence and appealed to anyone holding information to come forward. A garda spokesperson said that perhaps in the original investigation these witnesses were constrained in some way, but with the passage of time they may feel free to give vital information.
According to reports, the guards are looking at details of ‘people of interest’, including one French-speaking person, seen in a Kerry pub the night after the killing. He reportedly had scratches on his face, and his description matches one given independently by another witness.
According to The Irish Mirror, gardaí are also following up details of two French men who may have had a connection with Mme du Plantier in West Cork.
A German musician named Karl Heinz Wolney, a heavy-drinking man with a history of violence, was also one of the early suspects. He lived a mile from Sophie’s home, and was playing in Crookhaven on the evening that Sophie was killed. He had no alibi.
Wolney died by suicide in February 1997, according to the podcast West Cork, produced by respected investigative journalists Sam Bungey and Jennifer Forde.
Englishman Ian Bailey, who continues to live near Schull in Co. Cork, also remains a suspect.
Mr Bailey, who has always denied any involvement in the killing, has said that he has information which may be of use in the enquiry.