Judge: Sex offenders 'aren't allowed chance of rehabilitation'

Sex offenders weren't allowed a chance of rehabilitation by society "whipped on by the tabloid media", Mr Justice Paul Carney said when he jailed a man for seven years for orally raping his stepdaughter.

Sex offenders weren't allowed a chance of rehabilitation by society "whipped on by the tabloid media", Mr Justice Paul Carney said when he jailed a man for seven years for orally raping his stepdaughter.

The now 50-year-old man was convicted of the offence in July by a jury at the Central Criminal Court after he pleaded guilty to eight other charges of sexually assaulting her on dates from 1997 to 2004 at various south county addresses.

The jury returned its unanimous verdict following over three hours deliberation. He had denied that he orally raped the now 15 year-old girl on a date unknown between July 6, 1997 and December 31, 1999.

Mr Justice Carney certified him for registration as a sex offender and imposed concurrent four year terms for the sexual assaults. He said he took into account the breach of trust involved, her age and the length of time the offences continued, the nature of the offences and the effect they would probably have on her.

He noted the evidence given by Mr Gearoid Manning of the Granada Institute that the man had been assessed as "coming within the lower range of risk of re-offending" and said it didn't appear to be necessary in this case to direct that he undergo a period of post-release supervision.

Mr Manning agreed with Mr Justice Carney that "the attitude of the tabloid press was unhelpful in many of these cases" when asked by the judge if society "spurred on by the tabloid press" would give the defendant a chance to redeem his life.

Mr Justice Carney commented that for the rest of his life the defendant would be called a paedophile by society "whipped on the by the tabloid media" and not given a chance to rehabilitate himself.

Detective Garda Tina Walsh told Mr Patrick J McCarthy SC (with Ms Roisin Lacey BL), prosecuting, that the complainant revealed her stepfather orally raped her when she was six years old after she told him she had heard people talk about "sex" and asked him what "sex" was.

He replied he would tell her and put his hand down her trousers and touched her vagina before getting her to touch his penis. He then put his penis into her mouth while repeating words like "you dirty bitch".

He told her she wasn't to tell anybody and that it was "their secret". She said that on other occasions in the coming years, he had touched her body and got her to "wank" him but she had refused his request to let him "come" in her mouth.

The teenager agreed during cross-examination by Mr Patrick Gageby SC (with Ms Marie Torrens BL), defending at the trial in July, that she and her cousin "had been doing a bit of fooling around" for some months when she was 12 and he was 13, and that she would give her cousin "oral sex".

His mother disturbed them in bed once and she told her mother about it. She also told social workers and others about what she and her cousin had been doing which included kissing, petting as well as the oral sex. Her cousin wanted "to go further" and have full sex.

She told Mr Gageby she thought she mightn't have done the oral sex with her cousin if her stepfather hadn't done it to her.

The girl's mother told Ms Lacey of finding her daughter lying in bed with her then partner's arms around her after she had told him before that he shouldn't do this. She ordered the girl out of the bed.

Det Gda Walsh told Mr McCarthy that when arrested. The man denied performing oral or anal sex on his stepdaughter but he agreed he "had some sort of sexual relationship with her" which he said he knew was wrong but that he "didn't do anything with her for sexual gratification".

"It wasn't passionate, it wasn't sexual," he told witness and Detective Sergeant James Martin. He said they were "affectionate towards each other" and that nothing was ever done "against her will " or "in a horrible way". "She was always in control," he told the gardaí.

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