Athlone sex beast is handed two life sentences with no remission
Court hears harrowing evidence of attack on two little girls
By Patrick Counihan
The beast who lured two little girls from a birthday party in Athlone then raped them repeatedly has been given two life sentences with no remission.
The Central Criminal Court heart that the man told the two girls he would cut their parents’ throats before repeatedly raping them.
The court heard horrific evidence of how the 30-year-old man led the six and nine-year-old girls away from an area where they were playing with other children from the party.
He submitted them to an ordeal of sexual abuse and rape at a nearby apartment before they escaped through a ground floor window.
The Irish Times reports that the man pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to three counts of rape of the nine-year-old and two counts of rape of the six-year-old girl at an address in Co Westmeath on September 28th, 2013.
In harrowing scenes, the father of the younger victim talked in court of his family ‘being touched by evil most parents will not encounter.”
Justice Paul Carney told the court that he found it too upsetting to recite the facts of the case.
He said: “A feature of this case was to observe the faces of the hard-boiled press corps having difficulty listening to the facts emerging.
“It is too serious a case for any discount in sentence to come from the defendant’s co-operation with gardaí (police) after his arrest or from his early plea of guilty.”
After sentence, the convicted man asked to apologise to the victims.
A convicted criminal, he had been released from Castlerea prison just three days before the vicious attacks.
The Irish Times reports that his lawyer Martin Giblin said the defendant had a difficult family background and his father had abandoned him when he was six.
He said that in an extensive medical history that took place as a result of contact with psychological services there was ‘not a trace or scintilla of evidence of any form of paedophilia in his medical records’.
Police Inspector Aidan Minnock had told prosecuting counsel that the man told the girls that he had a six-year-old girl in his flat who was too shy to come out to play.
In a victim impact statement, the mother of the nine-year-old said since the attack she was living a nightmare she could not wake up from.
The mother said: “The man made a cold predatory decision to rape my daughter. He made her believe in her little heart that she would die if she didn’t comply. He gratified himself on the body of an innocent child.
“I lie awake at night tormented by unbearable images and imagine hearing her child’s heart beating in fear. My daughter has gone from being a happy, exuberant child to a worried reserved person who does not feel safe any more.”
The report says the father of the youngest victim sobbed while reading his victim impact statement. He said that hearing his child first tell him what the man had done to her was ‘like a bomb going off in his head’.
He said his daughter had repeatedly asked him why the accused did what he did.
He said she freezes or panics when she sees ‘creepy men everywhere, everyday’ and refused to be on her own at any time, including at night.
In a poem he wrote and read out in court he asked: “What can a Daddy do to protect this princess beauty? Are we lost to evil?”