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Emerson Suspect In Wife's Disappearance Leaves Jail

Patrick Delahunty leaves the Bergen County Jail Friday afternoon.
Patrick Delahunty leaves the Bergen County Jail Friday afternoon. Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia
Patrick Delahunty in Superior Court in Hackensack on Friday.
Patrick Delahunty in Superior Court in Hackensack on Friday. Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia

EMERSON, N.J. -- An Emerson man who remains a suspect in the disappearance of his American wife eight years ago was sentenced Friday as part of a guilty plea to self-deportation for using his own phony driver’s license to get a new one.

Paschal Delahunty, 52, was charged with using false documents after authorities discovered he'd been using a false name to live in the U.S. illegally for 15 years. He pleaded guilty Dec. 14, 2015 and agreed to leave the country, then report to the U.S. Consulate in Dublin and renounce any right to live in or travel to the U.S.

Delahunty has a ticket out of JFK Airport in Queens on Saturday and has agreed to report to the consulate on Wednesday.

Bergen County Undersheriffs Joseph Hornyak and George Buono said they plan to make sure he leaves the country after he is released from the Bergen County Jail on Friday.

The missing woman's family, in a letter to Daily Voice, said there are still so many unanswered questions that they believe authorities should ask -- but that cold cases don't get much attention.

Family members also cited the recent case of a man who jumped in front of a subway train in New York City after the stabbing death of his girlfriend in Midlan Park. Delahunty deliberately stepped in front of an emergency vehicle after his wife was reported mising.

John L. Molinelli, who recently was replaced as Bergen County prosecutor after 14 years, made cold cases a hallmark of his term. Several of those were closed with arrests, prosecutions and either guilty pleas or convictions.

"In this case, the person that may be responsible and any other person(s) that have knowledge that might help to resolve this case and he or she has not come forward, has to live with the consequences of their actions or inactions and whatever the effect such actions might have or ultimately will cause," Anthony and Michael Stellatos wrote. "Hopefully, at some point in time justice will be served if necessary and the families will obtain closure."

The investigation into Liza Murphy’s disappearance remained active, said Hornyak, the undersheriff, a former prosecutor's detective.

Delahunty could be returned to the U.S. if evidence of his involvement in his wife's disappearance emerges, he said.

“There is no statute of limitations on murder,” Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Danielle Grootenboer added.

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