A father who carried out 'gratuitous and sadistic cruelty' on two of his daughters as he sexually abused them throughout their childhood and raped one of them was jailed for ten years today.
Mr Justice Paul Carney imposed that total sentence on the 59-year-old Cork man who pleaded guilty to 12 sample counts of sexually assaulting two of his daughters and one count of raping one of them at the Central Criminal Court sitting in Cork.
Mr Justice Carney said he was taking into account the breach of trust by the accused in the violation of his daughters and their ages at the time of the sexual abuse. They were aged between six and eleven.
He also took account of the multiplicity of offences over such a prolonged period. The older daughter said she was sexually abused every single day. Her younger sister said she was assaulted every single weekend and on other days as well.
The judge described the defendant’s actions as “gratuitous and sadistic cruelty.”
There were a number of mitigating factors, according to Mr Justice Carney, including the fact that he had been forgiven by one of his daughters who had pleaded for maximum leniency for her father.
He said the defendant had the ongoing support of his family. Some of his siblings had written testimonials on his behalf. So did his youngest daughter who was never subjected to any sexual abuse.
Both victims are now in their thirties and married with children.
The older daughter broke all contract with her father a number of years ago. She now finds that she is extremely careful about her own children and protective towards them. She told a psychologist that the abuse keeps coming into her mind at unexpected times and she suffers terrible flashbacks.
The younger daughter, who indicated that she had forgiven him, felt that she wasted a lot of years. In company she felt isolated and different from others. She told the psychologist who prepared a victim impact report for the court that she loves her own husband dearly but cannot enjoy the sex they have because of the abuse she suffered in her childhood. She feels that her attitude to sex has been tarnished.
Despite the abuse this daughter suffered she said she had forgiven her father years ago for what he had done and hoped that he would not get a long prison sentence
The older daughter said she was sexually abused by her father on a daily basis throughout her childhood. She described him as a sadist who was nice to her during the abuse but punished her at other times by making her stand to attention, giving her Chinese burns on her arms and threatening her with a leather belt. There was evidence that she was once forced to stand to attention for eight hours.