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Man jailed for 11 years for rape of nephew in 1990s

A man who repeatedly and forcibly raped his nephew when the boy was a child and threatened to stab his parents if he told anyone has been jailed for 11 years.

The 58-year-old Cork man, who cannot be named to protect his victim’s identity, was found guilty by a jury of three counts of oral rape and three counts of anally raping his nephew following a Central Criminal Court trial in Cork last month.

The abuse took place at the man’s home address on dates between 1 January 1996 and 31 December 1999, when the boy was aged between eight and 10 years old and the man was in his 30s.

A local detective garda told Thomas Creed SC, prosecuting, that the abuse happened on three separate occasions when the man either called to the boy to come up to his room or accosted him outside and brought him up to his bedroom.

The man told his nephew that he would stab his parents if he told anyone about the abuse. The boy was in pain and bleeding after each incident, the court heard. The man has no previous convictions.

In a victim impact statement, which he read out to court himself, the complainant said that when he was a young boy, crimes were carried out on him “that no human being should have to suffer”.

“Something inside me died,” he said. He told the court the abuse changed him and he started getting into trouble and fighting authority figures as a result of the trauma he suffered “and continue to suffer every single day of my life”.

He said he blamed his father for not protecting him, and lost his relationship with him as a result. “This has destroyed me,” he said.

He outlined the difficulties he has had with his mental health, how he has been unable to maintain relationships and has attempted suicide. He said he now has a child, and his love for that child has kept him going.

“I will no longer be a victim and hope to see myself as a survivor,” he said. “I hope other victims will find the strength and courage and bravery that I have, to step out of the shadows and into the light.”

He said these victims would find love, compassion and a support network around them they could never have imagined, if they were able to come forward.

Sentencing the man today, Mr Justice Paul Burns paid tribute to the complainant for his “eloquent” and “moving” victim impact statement. He said it was clear that the abuse had a significant and fundamental impact on him.

In relation to the uncle, the judge said there was little by way of mitigation given his lack of guilty pleas. He said the offending fell into the higher category for such crimes.

It was “a deliberate and calculated campaign of abuse” and a serious breach of trust of a man against his young relative, he said. He noted the abuse occurred over a protracted period of time and was accompanied by threats of violence.

He handed down a sentence of 12 years and suspended the final year on a number of conditions. He backdated the sentence to when the man went into custody.

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