Man with 580 child porn images went online out of boredom

Boredom and curiosity prompted a middle-aged Corkman to go online and access child pornography but yesterday it emerged his actions had devastating consequences for him.

Conor Murphy, aged 46, of Diamond Hill, Monkstown, Co Cork, pleaded guilty to knowingly having in his possession 586 child pornography image files at an unspecified location between Mar 31, 2010, and Jul 9, 2010.

Det Garda Seán Minihane testified yesterday that Sgt Simon Grace obtained a warrant to search Murphy’s home in Jul 2010.

Gardaí arrived at 8am and Murphy, who co-operated with the search and investigation, asked gardaí not to conduct the search in front of his family as he did not want to upset them. He admitted there and then to downloading images of child pornography.

Det Garda Minihane said the images included images of children involved in oral and penetrative sexual acts with adults.

The defendant told gardaí he had deleted images and deleted his internet history after seeing them.

Defence senior counsel, Tom Creed, said the images were on the hard drive of the computer in an area which could only be accessed by expensive forensic analytical software not easily available to the public and that the defendant would not have had access to the images after deleting them.

Mr Creed said the offence had devastating consequence for Murphy in his life and said he was no longer living in the family home.

Mr Creed said of one videos downloaded by the accused had been deleted immediately after he saw what was on it.

“He was not involved in chat groups for this kind of thing,” said Mr Creed.

“There was no distribution by him, no printing of images and no use of his credit card for purchasing images.”

Mr Creed said, in mitigation, that the defendant had undertaken counselling and that it appeared that boredom and heavy drinking were factors in the background at the time he accessed the materials.

“He is beginning to realise he should not have ventured down that road,” said Mr Creed.

After hearing prosecution and defence evidence at Cork Circuit Criminal Court yesterday, Judge Petria McDonnell put sentencing back to tomorrow.


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