Dana in tears over sex abuse allegations

Former presidential candidate and MEP Dana Rosemary Scallon broke down in tears in a London court as she refuted allegations she had covered up sex abuse allegations made against her brother 30 years ago.

Ms Scallon was the main witness for the defence in the trial of her brother John, 60, who is pleading not guilty to five counts of indecently assaulting two girls.

On the stand at Harrow Crown Court, she denied she was told of the abuse allegations in the 1970s and that she arranged for treatment for her brother through a priest.

Yesterday was the ninth day of the trial. Two of the counts of abuse are against a child under the age of 13 and three are against a child under the age of 16 in the 1970s.

Earlier in the trial, the court had heard that Ms Scallon was told of the allegations by the alleged victim’s mother and she had arranged for her brother to see a priest, Fr Brown, declaring later that he had been cured.

Defence barrister Martyn Bowyer this morning questioned whether she had attempted to cover up the allegations.

“I have not, I have not,” Ms Scallon said, becoming visibly upset.

It is alleged Brown assaulted the first alleged victim twice in the UK and twice in the US where she lived. The second two allegations are not part of this indictment as they took place outside of the jurisdiction.

It is also claimed that after the first alleged assault in Iowa that the mother of the child contacted Ms Scallon — they were close at the time — to inform her what her happened.

When questioned as to whether she got a phone call about such allegations, Ms Scallon said: “Absolutely not, I did not”. She denied that she had a conversation about treatment and said the only priest called Fr Brown she knew had died in the 1960s.

The first time that she had become aware of the allegations, she says, was during a court case in the United States over a business disagreement in 2008.

She became emotional in the stand again when she recounted how she was confronted with the allegations by an Irish reporter in October 2011 during the presidential campaign.

In response, she read out a short statement after an RTÉ presidential debate deriding “malicious” lies that she said were circulating about a member of her family.

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