Man who downloaded child porn out of 'curiosity' given suspended sentence

A credit controller who was caught with 11 video files of child pornography that he had downloaded out of "a morbid curiosity" has been given a two-year suspended sentence by Judge Katherine Delahunt.

A credit controller who was caught with 11 video files of child pornography that he had downloaded out of "a morbid curiosity" has been given a two-year suspended sentence by Judge Katherine Delahunt.

Patrick Rafter (aged 29), with an address at Galtymore Road, Drimnagh, admitted to gardaí that "there's a couple of things on my computer that I should not have but I don't have a library or anything".

He later told them in interview that he had "a morbid curiosity" in child pornography but denied getting "a kick out of it" and said he was not a pedophile.

His defence counsel Mr Remy Farrell BL, said that a report from the Granada Institute indicated that this was "a once-off" for Rafter that had been brought on by distress caused by his mother's recent diagnosis for a terminal illness.

Rafter pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of the images, eight of which were fully downloaded, at his home on February 15, 2007. He was registered as a sex offender.

He had been identified after gardaí were contacted by the Brandenburg State police in Germany who had been investigating a specific website.

Judge Delahunt imposed a two-year sentence which she suspended for two years. She accepted that he had "deep remorse for this offence" and it was the courts view that he was "not a real theat to society".

She said she was taking into account the low level of downloading over a short period of time and the fact that he was a reciever of the material and not a supplier. She ordered the destruction of the computer hard drive containing the files.

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