The circuit court heard yesterday that the accused’s brother and the accused himself were arrested by gardaí after an international police investigation into child pornography led to an address in Tipperary. Sentence will be passed today.
Computer equipment seized at the accused’s brother’s address had 11,472 images and 67 video files of child pornography, in some of which the six-year-old boy could be identified; while 955 more image files and a video were found on a USB stick at an industrial unit used by the accused’s brother.
The accused in this case pleaded guilty to four counts of producing child pornography — offences committed between January 1, 2014, and March 20, 2015.
None of the parties involved in the case can be named, to protect the identity of the young boy. The images and videos included a male under 10 years of age being sexually assaulted and displaying his genitalia. The accused in this case was not involved in perpetrating the abuse, but in recording it.
The accused was interviewed a number of times after his arrest on March 26 of last year and made a number of “admissions” to gardaí, that he had videoed his nephew being raped and sexually assaulted by the boy’s father.
The accused alleged during garda interviews that he himself was 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 from eastern Europe.
The accused’s brother pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to rape and sexual assault and received a 20-year prison term. The accused in this case told gardaí he was “aware of [his brother’s] sexual interests in children”.
The court heard gardaí received information, after an international investigation involving police in Australia and New Zealand as well as continental Europe, about “chat records” on the internet between another suspect and a person named as “The Master”. One of these records from July 2014 had The Master “actively involved in talks about sharing pictures of his son”.
Detective Garda Siobhán Doyle said investigations revealed a word document which outlined how the latter person was “interested in little girls, nought to seven, but only has access to a young boy aged six”. This was traced to the address in Tipperary, the home of the brother of the accused in this case and his family.
Gardaí seized computer equipment from the accused’s brother’s home and found the images and videos, and also searched an industrial unit being used by the accused’s brother and found a USB stick with images and a video of child pornography. Det Gda Doyle said the material represent “one of the worst cases” her garda unit had come across.
Judge Tom Teehan said he will give his decision today.