Kilmarnock piled further misery on relegation-threatened Hearts with a wonderful win in the Capital.
It was harder than it needed to be as the Ayrshire side almost threw away a three-goal lead.
Stuart Findlay opened the scoring before Chris Burke and Eamonn Brophy condemned the Jambos to yet another defeat.
Sean Clare pulled one back late on as Killie goalkeeper Branescu was sent off, before Craig Halkett added a second.
Hearts piled early pressure on to Killie as they racked up four corners in the opening five minutes.
All were handled well by the visitors who cleared them with little danger.
Rory McKenzie had a stunning effort saved in the eighth minute as his volley fizzed towards the net, but it was tipped over well by Joel Pereira.
Craig Halkett had a great chance in the 13th minute as a back post cross reached him, but his header was amazingly clawed wide by Laurentiu Branescu.
The Jambos piled on the pressure, but Killie held them off well to keep them at bay.
But that all changed in the 24th minute when Stuart Findlay fired Alex Dyer's men with a powerful header from a corner.
Sean Clare picked up a booking just after the half hour mark for a reckless challenge on Rory McKenzie.
In the 38th minute Killie were in dreamland as Chris Burke latched on to a wonderful pass from Eamonn Brophy before chipping it over a helpless Pereira to make it 2-0.
John Souttar picked up a booking just after the second-half kicked off for handball, and Brophy fired a low shot towards goal, it went just wide.
But just minutes later did get his goal to make it 3-0 to the visitors. His blasted effort from the edge of the area flew past Pereira and almost burst the back of the net.
Uche Ikpeazu had a decent chance on the hour mark when he had a free header in the box, but he guided it wide of the post.
Former Killie striker Steven Naismith was booked in the 65th minute after tackling Alan Power in the middle of the pitch, with Power getting a yellow just before.
In the 78th minute Hearts were gifted the perfect opportunity to pull one back when Branescu hauled down Conor Washington.
And Sean Clare made no mistake from the spot, and the aftermath saw Branescu shown a second yellow and sent off.
Jan Koprivec was quickly brought on and replaced McKenzie.
Hearts piled on the pressure, and Liam Boyce missed a great chance at the back post when he was unmarked, but it went well wide.
The hosts had a number of late chances but failed to convert.