herald

Monday 5 December 2016

Brother's sex abuse left girl 'paralysed in fear and pain'

The court heard that during this time the accused inappropriately touched his sister and orally raped her
The court heard that during this time the accused inappropriately touched his sister and orally raped her

A Dublin man who as a teenager sexually abused his younger sister will be sentenced later this month.

The victim was aged between nine and 12 years old at the time of the abuse while her brother was aged between 14 and 17.

The victim told the court that her family had been completely torn apart and destroyed by the abuse.

The 31-year-old accused, who cannot be identified to protect his victim's identity, pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to sexual assault and oral rape of his sister at their family home on dates between 2000 and 2002.

The court heard that during this time the accused inappropriately touched his sister and orally raped her.

The abuse came to light after the girl told a school friend. Her family was informed and social services became involved. The accused man attended specialised therapeutic services and a formal complaint was not made to gardai until 2013.

Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy remanded the accused in custody for finalisation of sentence later this month.

Confusion

In her victim impact statement the now 26-year-old woman said she had been a happy child "without a care in the world" and that the accused had been her favourite brother.

She said that had all changed one day and she had been left "paralysed in fear, confusion and pain".

She said the weeks after the first incident had been filled with confusion. "I felt bad like I had been bold," she said.

"Little did I know it would be a regular occurrence over the next two years," she continued.

The woman said she felt trapped as she had not said anything the first time it happened and her brother was good to her during the day. She said she began to understand what was happening mainly from reading her sister's magazines.

She described her home as "nothing short of a war zone" and felt blamed for what had happened while her brother was treated as the victim. She said the impact of the abuse on her had been "devastating, profound and far reaching".

Her family had been destroyed by the abuse, she said.

Defence counsel, Sean Gillane SC, said the accused had shown himself to be a law-abiding citizen and urged the court to be as lenient as possible.

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