Latest: Guard recalls Black Widow investigation in wake of Catherine Nevin's death

By Greg Murphy

Catherine Nevin aka the Black Widow has died following a long illness.

The 67-year-old had been granted temporary full-time release from prison in September of 2017.

Update 7pm: Former Assistant Garda Commissioner for the South East region, Jim McHugh, has spoken following the news of Catherine Nevin's death.

Mr McHugh was first on the scene when Tom Nevin was shot and killed at Jack Whyte's pub in 1996.

He was the first person to interview Nevin before she was arrested.

Speaking to RTÉ's Drivetime today, Mr McHugh recalled the scene that met him when he arrived at the pub where Tom Nevin's body was lying "with a pen still held in his right hand".

On further investigation of the scene Mr McHugh said there were "some unusual circumstances" such as jewellery strewn on the stairs, the phone in the bedroom being off the hook and a glass of scotch by Catherine's side of the bed.

"In particular, I recall - which certainly did to some extent raise my suspicion - was a portable television which would be of little value and would often times be found in bedrooms, was outside the door of the bedroom in the hallway creating the impression that the robbers were going to take it away which one would have thought unlikely because of its relative inexpensive value," said Mr McHugh.

"If they came in to rob the jewellery, it was strewn all over the place.

"There was still some money there. Not all of it was taken."

When she was interviewed, she told them that she had fallen asleep after reading and drinking some of the whiskey found by the bed and was later disturbed "rather violently" by an individual in a balaclava.

Mr McHugh said that her account of what happened had been "well rehearsed" and she appeared "quite distraught and traumatised as one would expect but that was the impression she created."

While Mr McHugh said that the investigation was broad, Nevin was a person of interest.

Mr McHugh said that when being questioned by gardaí Nevin behaved like "an experienced, hardened criminal".

After she was convicted of Tom Nevin's murder, Mr McHugh said he was delighted but he also felt sorry.

Listen to the full interview below:

Earlier:Black Widow Catherine Nevin dies aged 67

She had been in palliative care after finding out last year that she is terminally ill with a brain tumour.

She passed away last night.

When contacted for confirmation, the Irish Prison Service said they cannot comment on individual prisoners or cases.

The Gardaí have also said that they cannot comment on sudden deaths.

In 2000, Nevin was jailed for life having been convicted of murdering her husband Tom Nevin at their pub, Jack White’s Inn, near Brittas Bay, Co Wicklow, on March 19, 1996.

She also received a seven-year sentence for soliciting three men - Gerry Heapes, William McClean and John Jones - to kill her husband in 1989 and 1990.

Ms Nevin, who had always denied any involvement in the murder, lost an appeal against her conviction in 2003. In 2010 she also lost an application to have her conviction declared a miscarriage of justice.

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