By Conor Kane
A man who admitted making pornographic videos of his six-year-old disabled nephew being raped and sexually assaulted by his nephew’s father has been jailed for eight years.
The 27-year-old, who cannot be named to protect the victim’s identity, pleaded guilty at Tipperary Circuit Criminal Court to four counts of producing child pornography, contrary to the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act, in 2014 and 2015.
Judge Thomas Teehan said he could not remember “more repulsive facts” outlined in any case as those involved in this case. He sentenced the defendant to 10 years imprisonment on each of the four counts, to run concurrently, and suspended the last two years.
The court heard this week that the accused did not take part in the abuse on the six-year-old boy but videoed it as his brother was raping and sexually assaulting the boy with a number of items.
The accused’s brother has already been dealt with in the Central Criminal Court, where he received a 20-year sentence for rape.
Judge Teehan said the six-year-old boy had been “repeatedly subjected to depraved acts perpetrated by his father and recorded by his uncle”.
“[The victim] has suffered greatly from the effects of these base acts and their aftermath.” The judge referred to victim impact evidence given by a social worker, Terry Bradshaw, and the violation of the victim’s privacy and bodily integrity. “It would be difficult to imagine a more extreme example of such violations.”
The abuse and pornography were discovered after an international investigation into child pornography which involved police forces in Australia and New Zealand as well as Europol and Interpol.
Gardaí and the HSE raided the accused’s brother’s home in Co Tipperary in March of last year and found computer equipment there, and at an industrial unit used by his brother, which contained over 12,000 image files and 68 video files of child pornograpy.
The court heard that the accused’s brother was the “main offender” in this case and that only some of the files found were produced by the accused. The judge said the accused’s brother was a “malign influence”.
The accused was interviewed by gardaí seven times after his arrest on March 26 of last year and made some “admissions” to gardaí, that he had videoed his nephew being raped and sexually assaulted by the boy’s father.
The accused told gardaí that he was himself sexually assaulted when he was 10 by his brother although he had made no formal complaint to the authorities in this or any other jurisdiction.
Both men are originally from Eastern Europe. The accused’s brother is 19 years older.
The accused also told gardaí that he was “aware of [his brother’s] sexual interests in children”.
The international police operation traced “chat records” on the internet between another suspect and a person named as “The Master” and in one “chat”, The Master was “actively involved in talks about sharing pictures of his son”.
A word document outlined how this person was “interested in little girls, nought to seven, but only has access to a young boy aged six”.
The chat records led gardaí to the house in Co Tipperary where the accused’s brother lived. Gardaí recognised a boy who was present with his father as being the victim of some of the abuse in the images and videos.
Social worker Terry Bradshaw said that the boy, who had been close to his father, had “experienced sexual abuse of the most extreme kind” and this abuse has been circulated online as child pornography.
Judge Teehan said it was a case of “extreme aggravating factors” and the offences were in the highest category of their type, although the “main perpetrator of these heinous acts” was not the accused in this case, but his brother. “His much older brother was obviously a very malign influence on [the accused] and even more so, unfortunately, on his own son.”
Judge Teehan pointed out that the accused had pleaded guilty and co-operated with gardaí and suspended the last two years of the 10-year sentence which was imposed in each of the four child pornography counts, to run concurrently.