The corpse of a 66-year-old man was carried to a post office by two fraudsters in an alleged bid to claim his pension, in scenes reminiscent of the 1989 film Weekend At Bernie’s.
In the dark comedy movie, a pair of insurance salesmen lug around the body of their murdered boss – pretending he’s still alive – and lose and recover his corpse, which is clothed and wearing tinted glasses, several times.
Irish police are investigating whether the elderly man, named locally as Peadar Doyle, may have been dead for up to two days when yesterday morning’s incident took place.
The fraudsters, one of whom knew the 66-year-old well, had put a jumper over Mr Doyle’s face and a hat on his head.
Both men, who were in their 30s, went into the post office and tried to get the money but staff told them they needed his next of kin there or Mr Doyle himself.
Pictured: Gardaí take the body of the man, named locally as Peadar Doyle, from Hosey’s shop in County Carlow, Ireland after fraudsters allegedly tried to claim his pension yesterday morning, putting a jumper over his face and a hat on his head
The men had told staff that the pensioner was having a heart attack when questioned about his wellbeing and placed the body on the ground. Pictured: Gardaí outside the shop in County Carlow yesterday
The fraudsters’ actions had echoes of the 1989 film Weekend At Bernie’s. In the dark comedy movie, a pair of insurance salesmen lug around the body of their murdered boss – pretending he’s still alive – and lose and recover his corpse, which is clothed and wearing tinted glasses, several times. (Above, the film, starring Andrew McCarthy, right, and Jonathan Silverman
Sound familiar? Weekend At Bernie’s
Weekend At Bernie’s is a dark US comedy released in 1989, starring Andrew McCarthy (‘Larry’) and Jonathan Silverman (‘Richard’) as low-level insurance salesmen.
While going over some records at the New York firm where they work, the pair unearth fraudulent paperwork – but are unaware that their boss, Bernie, is the perpetrator.
After they tell him, Bernie invites them to spend a weekend at his beach house in the Hamptons – unaware that he has ordered the Mob to kill them.
Before the pair arrive at the beach house, Bernie himself ends up getting ‘whacked’ as he’d been sleeping with the mobster’s girlfriend.
When Larry and Richard turn up, they find the corpse… just as guests start arriving for a party.
Fearing being implicated in Bernie’s death, and wanting to have a good time at the luxury house, they pretend he is still alive – putting sunglasses on him to hide his lifeless body.
Subsequent hi-jinks see them losing and recovering the corpse several times, including a scene where Bernie falls off a boat into water.
Afterwards, it is alleged they went to Mr Doyle’s home and carried him along a public footpath before they again tried to claim his pension.
His appearance led an employee at the Hosey’s shop in County Carlow to become concerned about his wellbeing and she asked if he was unwell.
The men are said to have told her that Mr Doyle was having a heart attack and placed his body on the ground.
Gardaí and an ambulance were called as events yesterday unfolded and the men stayed at the post office, making no attempt to escape, according to the Sunday World.
One woman said her daughter saw the two men carry a man into the post office.
Speaking to the Irish Independent, she said that the man looked unwell and that his feet were ‘dragging the ground.’
There was a queue outside of the post office at the time and people had initially thought the man was having a heart attack.
She said: ‘I feel awful for the staff. I’ve a 12-year-old daughter and I’m trying to explain to her what happened and sure where do you start? It’s awful.’
It is understood that the men told Gardaí Mr Doyle was alive when he was brought into the post office.
No arrests have been made so far but both men have been interviewed by Gardai and given statements.
The Gardaí are investigating if Mr Doyle died at a nearby property of natural causes.
Residents and neighbours of Mr Doyle are sad and shocked after the incident.
He was described as a ‘lovely man and neighbour’ by one and another said it had been a ‘sad night’ and a ‘shock.’
Mayor of Carlow, Ken Murnane, said: ‘I was absolutely shocked to hear about what happened.
‘I cannot believe anyone would do something like that. It beggars belief, I’m just shocked.’
A Garda spokesperson said Gardaí are investigating all the circumstances surrounding the unexplained death of an elderly male in the Carlow area on Friday morning.
They said: ‘The services of the Garda Technical Bureau and the Office of the State Pathologist have been requested,’
‘A post-mortem will be conducted by the Office of the State Pathologist, the results of which will determine the course of the investigation.
‘No further information is available at this time.’
No arrests have been made so far but both men have been interviewed by Gardai and given statements. Pictured: Gardai carry out investigations at the scene yesterday