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Accused poison cocktail killer nabbed in Ireland

ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- A man accused of murdering his wife with a poisoned cocktail 17 years ago has been arrested in Ireland, where he had remarried and was working as a bartender, the FBI said Tuesday.

Joseph Michael Maloney, 49, who was living under the assumed name Michael O'Shea, was identified in 1973 when Dublin police matched his fingerprints with those on an FBI wanted poster.

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He was not returned to Rochester because no extradition treaty existed, FBI agent Philip Smith said.

He was arrested under a 3-week-old treaty that allows the United States to extradite suspected felons from Ireland, and is the fifth American suspect arrested in Ireland since the treaty took effect on Dec. 15. None has yet been returned to the United States.

Maloney had been arrested in Rochester on June 5, 1967, and accused of killing his estranged wife, June Maloney, 27, by giving her a cocktail of orange juice and wood alcohol.

He escaped from the former Rochester State Hospital less than three months later while waiting for a psychiatric examination to determine if he was mentally fit to stand trial.

Maloney had been working as a bartender in the Dublin area and had remarried, according to Eugene Harding, an agent in the Rochester FBI office.

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Monroe County District Attorney Howard Relin said he has asked Irish Republic authorities to hold Maloney without bail pending an extradition hearing, which could be scheduled within two or three weeks.

First Assistant District Attorney Charles Siragusa and a representative of Rochester's Physical Crimes Unit are expected to go to Dublin to testify at the extradition hearing, Relin said.

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