Northern Ireland

Deirdre O'Flaherty: Search for doctor missing for 10 years ends

Deirdre O'Flaherty
Image caption Deirdre O'Flaherty was also known by her maiden name of Deirdre Donnelly

A major search in County Donegal for a doctor who went missing almost 10 years ago has ended with "nothing that furthers the search".

Deirdre O'Flaherty, a GP based in Strabane in Northern Ireland, has not been seen since 11 January 2009 when her car was found at Kinnagoe beach.

She had been staying with her husband and children at a holiday home nearby.

Despite an extensive air and sea search, the mother-of-three's body was never found.

The search, in the Milford area of County Donegal, began on Tuesday.

On Friday, An Garda Síochána (Irish police) said nothing had been found to further the investigation.

It was carried out by members of the Donegal Divisional Search Team and Garda Technical Bureau, along with private contractors.

Dr O'Flaherty, 46, was also known by her maiden name of Deirdre Donnelly.

In 2012, three years after her disappearance, a High Court in Belfast ruled that Dr O'Flaherty had died.

Image caption The searches took place on land between Rathmullan and Kerrykeel

It was the first time that legislation allowing the courts to declare a missing person dead was used in Northern Ireland.

The judge ruled that it was proved to the court's satisfaction that Dr O'Flaherty entered the sea on 11 January 2009 and subsequently drowned.

Gardaí have renewed their appeal for anyone who may have information in relation to Dr O'Flaherty's disappearance to contact them.

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