February 2021

Man who raped six-month-old to be sentenced next week

A man that brutally raped his partner’s six-month-old niece and made videos of the crime will be sentenced next week.

The 58-year-old man also pleaded guilty to producing sexually explicit images of four other children who were between the ages of five and 12 at the time.

The offending took place over the course of seven months up to August 2019.

The man cannot be named at this stage in order to protect the identities of the victims.

A local detective told Sean Gillane SC, prosecuting, on Thursday that an anonymous envelope was delivered to a Garda station on August 14th, 2019, which contained an SD or memory card and a handwritten note.

The handwritten note outlined that the memory card contained a clip of an infant being sexually abused by the accused man and asked gardaí to arrest “this monster”.

The detective testified that an examination of the memory card revealed 20 video clips, each lasting three minutes, of female adults and female children using a toilet in a bathroom in the accused’s home.

The Central Criminal Court heard that four of the video files showed four female children individually using the toilet and their genitals were exposed. The defendant could be seen coming into the bathroom and fixing the position of the camera in the majority of the clips.

The court heard that the accused man was in a relationship with a woman from 2012 onwards and the couple would mind her nieces from time to time in the defendant’s flat.

The woman told gardaí that she would occasionally leave the man alone with the children if she was going to the shops and said she was unaware of events that had taken place. She said the accused had a “pattern” of checking whether the toilet was clean before the children used it.

The man pleaded guilty last year to two counts of oral rape, one count of attempted rape and five counts of sexual assault of the then six-month-old baby.

He also pleaded guilty to five counts of production of child pornography of the baby and the four other children. He further pleaded guilty to four counts of possession of child sexual abuse imagery at his home in the midlands on dates from February to August 2019.

In a victim impact statement, one mother said she was introduced to the accused man seven years ago and welcomed him into their family home.

She said she could not believe that the man had done “such horrific things” to her daughters and was grateful that they are young enough to move on with their lives.

She said she no longer leaves her children with anyone and knows that she will have to explain to them what happened some day. “He is a monster and is where he should be today,” she said.

Another mother told the court in her statement that she had trusted the accused and thought he had her children’s best interests at heart. “In my worst nightmare I could never have imagined it. I find now that when I need to use the bathroom I’m scanning it to make sure me or the children are not being recorded,” she said.

Colman Cody SC, defending, said that the level of criminality in question was impossible to comprehend and the aggravating factors included the breach of trust.

“There was a degree of planning employed by him and the recording of these incidences provided him with a source of gratification,” Mr Cody said.

Judge Alexander Owens remanded the man in custody until February 26th, when he will be sentenced.