THE case of a a 79-year-old man who is accused of indecently assaulting four boys at locations in Clare and Limerick has been sent forward for trial.
The man faces a total of 26 indecent assault charges relating to offences which are alleged to have occurred on dates from 1976 to 1981 at four separate locations. He was aged between 33 and 38 at the time.
Prior to Judge Alec Gabbett giving the man the statutory ‘alibi’ warning, solicitor Tara Godfrey said her client’s hearing “is poor”.
At a sitting of Ennis District Court Judge Gabbett then asked the man “is your hearing poor?” Speaking from the body of the court the man replied: “No, your honour.”
The judge advised the defendant he has 14 days to let the State Solicitor know if he has an alibi for when the offences are alleged to have occurred as part of his defence.
“These date back to 1976 so you might not remember,” he commented.
Legal aid was extended to include a senior counsel and a junior counsel during the circuit court proceedings.
Giving evidence of arrest, charge and caution of the man at the same court in May, Detective Garda Denise Moriarty of Henry Street garda station in Limerick stated in response to charge concerning two of the four complainants, the accused said “I never heard of that name.”
In response to one of 12 indecent assault counts concerning a third complainant from 1976 to 1981, the accused replied “I have no recollection of that."
The counts of indecent assault are alleged to have occurred at Cratloe in south east Clare, Holy Island on Lough Derg, Garryowen, Limerick and at Ennis Road, Limerick.
The accused is facing 12 indecent assaults against one then boy, three against another, 10 against another and one against a fourth.
Sgt Aiden Lonergan said that allegations have been investigated by the Protective Services Unit attached to Henry Street garda Station in Limerick since 2019.
As part of the man’s bail conditions, the accused is to have no contact with the witnesses directly or indirectly, surrender his passport, reside at a Clare address and sign on twice weekly at his local garda station.
The case is due before Ennis Circuit Court next month.
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