Post-mortem examination confirms strangulation was cause of death of Michaela Harte

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Updated: January 11, 2011

Three men are due to appear in court this morning in connection with the murder of Michaela Harte. Police said suspects in the killing included staff members and former employees of the Legends Hotel.

Michaela Harte’s killer is supposed to have used a false magnetic key to gain access to her room at the Legends Hotel. Police believe that the murderer had intended to steal from the room but was surprised by Ms Harte’s return and panicked, strangling the young woman in the process. It is understood that data from the “time frame” has been recorded on the hotel’s computer server.

Another major development in the case was the discovery of skin tissues underneath the fingernails of Michael Harte. It is believed that the blood samples were sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) and a report is due on Friday.

Ten employees of the hotel were arrested by detectives and quizzed at length on their whereabouts during the time frame in question. Later on Tuesday evening an employee who worked at the hotel as a valet and had access to rooms was also detained. The valet had access to one of three magnetic cards reserved for employees of the hotel. The cards which are mainly used by room service allow access to all rooms within the complex.

There men will appear at Mapou District Court this morning on murder charges.

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