A post mortem examination is due to take place this morning on the body of Mikolaj Wilk, a Polish man who was fatally assaulted in a house in Co. Cork yesterday.
A car was found burnt out several kilometres away in Waterfall.
Forensic examinations of both scenes were initiated and Gardaí are appealing for information.
The 35-year-old Polish man was found with serious injuries when Gardaí arrived at The Bridge House, Maglin, Ballincollig between 3.15am and 3.30am yesterday morning.
His assailants had fled the scene.
Mikolaj Wilk, a gardener originally from Poland, died of his wounds at Cork University Hospital after the attack which left emergency services sickened by the crime scene.
Mr Wilk’s wife Elzbieta, who is in her early 30s, lost at least one finger and had to undergo emergency surgery after the attack in which up to four men entered their home at around 3am.
It is believed that her injuries were a result of attempts to protect herself or her husband, rather than a deliberate attempt to cut off her fingers.
At about 4:20am less than 6km away a car was discovered on fire at Iniskenny, Ballinora, Waterfall.
The couple’s two children, both aged under six, and another women in her 30s — believed to be renting a room in the house — were also at home but were physically unharmed.
The children were in the care of social workers last night while their mother was treated in hospital.
Gardaí found a firearm, possibly a handgun, and two machetes in a burnt-out car that was used by the gang. They believe the car was a BMW 3 series.
The men, who are not thought to be Polish, broke into the Wilks’ family home at Maglin, outside Ballincollig, at around 3am as the couple slept in bed.
Gardaí arrived within five minutes of being called to what is said to have been a horrific scene, where they provided medical assistance to the couple until an ambulance arrived to take both victims to hospital.
They are appealing to anyone with information to contact them – in particular, drivers who may have dash cam footage and who travelled in the Maglin, Ballincollig, Ballinora and Waterfall areas between 2am and 5am yesterday morning.
A post mortem on Mr Wilk’s body will take place this morning.
The Polish chaplain in Cork has said that the late Mikolaj Wilk, his wife Elzbieta and their two young children will feature in the thoughts and prayers of the community.
Fr Piotr Galus said the death of the Polish gardener was a “savage” crime.
“I didn’t know the man personally but I can say that we will involve those people in our prayers. We will pray for the family.”