Father (73) jailed for life after raping young daughters and abusing son in five-year hell
SUFFER: Children were in the hands of 'monster'
A 73-year-old father who repeatedly raped his young daughters and sexually abused his son has been jailed for life at the Central Criminal Court.
The Dublin man was convicted in August of 87 counts of sexually assaulting, raping and orally raping two daughters between the ages of five and 11 and sexually assaulting his son from the age of three to six from 1997 to 2002.
Mr Justice George Birmingham imposed life sentences for the "campaign of rape" he inflicted on two of his daughters and gave the man, who has no evidence of personality or psychological disorder, further sentences for sexually assaulting his son as a young boy.
He said evidence in the seven-week trial had been "truly shocking" and that references to the man being a "monster" in a "home from hell" contained no exaggeration.
"The depths of (the man's) depravity were matched only by his deviousness and cunning," he said.
Mr Justice Birmingham said the HSE had identified the children were at risk and put them in care, but their father undertook a "campaign" to frustrate its efforts and continue his abuse.
The 19-year-old eldest victim said she lives in fear of the day her father will "come back" and pleaded with Mr Justice Birmingham to jail him for "very a long time".
"Dear dad, I loved you and trusted you and I thought you loved me the most," she read.
"It was all lies, if you loved me you wouldn't have abused me or sent me away."
Her 18-year-old sister told the court that she had repeatedly self-harmed and tried to kill herself.
"Since the age of four I was betrayed in the worst possible way," she read. "He stole my whole childhood. I would have been better off if he had killed me."
The now 17-year-old male victim declined to give evidence or submit a victim impact report.
Garda Deirdre Walsh told Ms Isobel Kennedy (with Ms Anne Maire Lawlor) that the sexual abuse of the three children began in the family home prior to the children being taken into care in February 2000.
The girls were returned home later that year but the accused continued to live with the family. The girls were again taken back into care in 2001 but ran away on many occasions.
During the time the eldest girl was in care she escaped repeatedly and was sexually abused by the accused. He gave her a mobile phone to make contact with him and also gave her money so she could get away.
She was sexually abused and raped in various locations such as a McDonald's toilet, on the DART and in hotels. She said her father told her: "This is what daddies do."
Her younger sister was also abused on occasions when she ran away from the care home.
Garda Walsh said the children made statements of complaint against their father in 2005 and 2006. The accused was told of the allegations and came voluntarily to the garda station where he denied the charges and told gardai that the children had various reasons for making the allegations.
He said he had suggested to his eldest daughter that she make the allegations so the children could get home from care and said he had put deliberate mistakes into a letter he wrote describing how he molested his daughters. He said his son had been put up to making the allegations by his foster mother.
He had previous convictions for indecent assault of children.