Tuesday 22 October 2019

Verdict expected in sex abuse case

Judge's gavel
Judge's gavel

THE JURY of eight men and four women are expected to return a verdict today (Tuesday) in the trial of a Wexford man who has been accused of indecently assaulting three brothers in the 1960s and 1970s.

The trial at Wexford Circuit Criminal Court before Judge Barry Hickson enters its third week today when charges will be made to the jury by Prosecuting Counsel, Marjorie Farrell, along with Defence Counsel, John Peart, and Judge Hickson, after which they will begin their deliberations.

The man in his sixties is charged with 45 counts of indecent assault on the three brothers at a number of locations from September 1968 to December 1979. He pleaded not guilty to all charges.

There is one charge in respect of one of the brothers dating back to 1968, 23 charges in respect of a second dating back to between 1966 and 1971, and 21 in respect of a third brother dating from 1975 to 1979.

When the trial resumed on Tuesday last the third brother, in continuing evidence, said the defendant was well-known and accomplished in a sporting organisation in Wexford, and that he himself also got involved in the sport.

However, Mr. Peart, for the defence, said it would not make sense that he (witness) would bring himself into the defendant's company if he had been abused as a child. Mr. Peart maintained that the witness had an option of more than one club but picked this one.

The witness denied a suggestion that he was not abused by the accused man, and that he was making it up.

Mr. Peart said: 'I have a photo of plaster...this was a time when you allege you were abused.'

'My younger brother would have accompanied me to the house whenever I went down. I stopped going to the house because I did not trust the accused man,' he said.

The mother of the three brothers said that her children were often brought into the house by the accused.

Det. Garda Michelle Carey gave evidence of investigation the complaints along with Det. Sgt. Ronan Murphy. On February 15, 2011, they arrested the accused man at his home and conveyed him to New Ross Garda for further questioning.

When informed as to why he had been arrested, the man replied: 'Don't know what you are talking about'.

Det. Carey said that during the course of the interview the accused man said: 'someone has it in for me. I have not talked to him for years. I have never spoken to one of the brothers in my life. I never had anything to do with one of the brothers. I remember another one of them. He would always be playing football outside.

'We always played cards in my house but the three brothers never played cards in my house. I would not have been thinking of sex at fifteen years of age. The man is a liar.'

Det. Carey said that when questioned about another brother, during the course of the interview, the accused said: 'I would not have any time for him. This man did not come into my house every Sunday as I would be out [at my sport].'

The Garda witness said that the man denied carrying out sexual acts including performing oral sex on one of the brothers.'

Det. Carey also said that the accused denied seeing one of the brothers on his Communion Day. When it was suggested that he stopped abusing this brother when he was nine years of age, the accused said it did not happen.

Det. Carey also told the court the accused man, in his statement, claimed the brothers had made allegations against him 'because there is hardly a family in the street they could talk to'.

'My life is destroyed, my children's lives are destroyed, and my wife's life has been destroyed. It did not happen. One of the brothers is to blame for these allegations being made. That's the way it looks to me. All I know is that I did not do anything.

'I would not have been at home during the week, I would have been working overtime every evening and Saturday morning, while every Sunday I would be out.

'This brother got the other brothers to make complaints because we did not talk. I believe it's all far fetched as I did not do anything to anyone. It's a whole family affair isn't it.'

Det. Carey also said that during the course of the interview the accused denied enticing the three brothers into his house to abuse them. He said that they knew in their own heads they're telling lies, adding that 'I never had a row with anyone on the street.'

The accused, said Det. Carey, denied that he masturbated one of the brothers or put his hand down his pants.

During his evidence to the trial the accused denied ever having one of the boys on his knee. He also said there was no truth whatsoever regarding the allegations in the house as his mother would always have been in the house.

He said one of the brothers was never in his house. He said if he had molested one of the brothers in a particular room his screms would have been heard in the room of the house next door.

He said he never gave one of the brother's money.

Cross examined by Ms Farrelly, that accused continually denied abusing any of the three brothers in the house or in an outbuilding in the back garden.

'I'm sure if he told his daddy he would have been down to the house like a torpedo. I never told him not to tell anyone because it never happened. I did not try to masturbate him. I never had anything to do with the family, I know nothing about them, and everything they say is lies. One of the brothers I never spoke to in my life. It's all lies.'

The trials continues today (Tuesday).

Wexford People