July 2017

Donegal man jailed for raping and sexually assaulting girl

A Donegal man who raped and sexually assaulted a young girl numerous times over a period of at least five years has been jailed for eight years.

52-year-old Robert McLean of Derryreel, Falcarragh claimed to gardaí he had “no knowledge” or recollection of abusing the child, but that he did not doubt she was telling the truth.

At the Central Criminal Court, Mr Justice Paul McDermott sentenced him to eight years imprisonment for one count of rape, and seven years imprisonment for each count of sexual assault.

He also imposed a seven years prison term for an offence of producing child sexual abuse images.

The sentences will run concurrently with each other.

On the day of his scheduled trial in April of this year, McLean pleaded guilty to having sexually assaulted the child in 2006, when she was four years old.

He later pleaded guilty to six further counts of sexually assaulting the child when she was aged between four and nine years old on dates between March 2008 and August 2011 and to one count of knowingly producing child abuse images for the purpose of distribution, exportation, sale or show on an unknown date between August 2007 and August 2008.

The court heard that a home video recorded by the pervert on a camcorder surfaced during a separate and unconnected investigation when gardaí found the video in the man’s house.

It contained the sexual abuse of the girl

The victim, now aged in her mid-teens, was present in court but left the room when the judge began to play the video on his laptop, out of view of those present.

The court heard that she was aged between five and seven when Mclean filmed the 30 minute video and has no memory of the video being filmed.

The investigating guard told Róisín Lacey SC, prosecuting, that the abuse came to light in 2014 after the girl’s school principal became concerned that she was risk of self-harm, and contacted her mother.

The girl, then aged 13, made allegations of repeated sexual abuse by Mclean

Mclean has been registered as a sex offender and will be subject to five years post-release supervision, during which he is not allowed to contact the victim.