A Wicklow man who admitted sexually abusing his step-daughter has been acquitted of raping but has been convicted of further charges of molesting her.
The 43-year-old man pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to 33 charges of sexual assault on dates between June 2002 and January 2004.
He had pleaded not guilty to 18 charges of sexual assault on dates between January 2005 and June 2006, 13 charges of rape between June 2003 and June 2004 and 22 charges of anal rape on dates between August 2004 and June 2006.
Brendan Grehan SC defending told the jury, before any evidence was heard, that his client admits that he touched and kissed the young girl from the time she was 12 years old but denied raping or anally raping her.
He also claimed that the abuse stopped before the girl turned 15 but the complainant told the jury it continued until she was 16 years old.
The jury accepted the victim’s evidence and convicted him of the 18 charges of sexual assault.
The man was acquitted of all the rape and anal rape charges following a three-day trial and one hour and 40 minutes deliberating.
Mr Justice Paul Carney declared the man a sex offender and directed the preparation of a victim impact report.
He thanked the jury for its careful attention to the case.
“Cases like this are distressing for everyone who must deal with them,” Mr Justice Carney said before he exempted the jury from further service for life.
He remanded the man in continuing custody and adjourned the case to next month for sentence.