'What he did has haunted me for over 30 years' - victims of David Barry face him in court

'What he did has haunted me for over 30 years' - victims of David Barry face him in court

Retired Cork businessman David Barry has been jailed for five years for sexually assaulting boy scouts in Cork.

“You fooled scout leaders, gardaí, TDs, parents and media alike into thinking you were an upstanding citizen - the flash car, the businessman, the scout leader.” 

That was the declaration from one of the boy scouts – now a man in his 40s – to 73-year-old David Barry when he faced him as Barry was jailed for five years for sexually abusing ten boys over many years at his home.

“As a young boy the accused gave me alcohol in his home and he also gave it to other young boys in my presence. He exposed us to pornography on the TV. He made us shower two at a time in his en suite. I wondered afterward if you used to record us, with you being a professional photographer after all.

"Now that I am older I understand clearly your deception. Dedicating significant portions of your time to getting access to young boys using the CBSI as your facilitator.

“All those years doing Santa’s grotto in Wilton – the reality, which has finally been exposed, paints a very different picture. You were in fact the rotten apple in the great community. Now it is time for justice for me and all your victims.

“I found out on my wedding day that I was not the only one you had interfered with. It was then I knew it was time to take action. I felt it was time the paedophile was exposed for what you are. It would take many years more for me to have the confidence to do it and I am glad I have done it.

Another victim said, “Your vile self-gratification, your lies, your deceit had had a profound negative effect on our lives. In a mendacious and manipulative fashion you have betrayed every trust placed in you.

“For your own venal reasons you betrayed the trust of your friends, family and our society.

“Your actions over the years are manifestly unforgivable and your manipulation of innocents shows cunning, forethought and a careful, planned process which demonstrates your so-called apology is insincere and cannot be taken as valid.

“You engineered situations where you would abuse us for your own pleasure with no though of the consequences to your victims.

“I hope that we will succeed and move on with our lives but your vile actions will continue to affect us.” A third man said he did not even want to be in Cork Circuit Criminal Court: “I don’t want to read this out loud. I wish I could stand here today and tell you that I have been strong and this had no impact on my life but I can’t. I can’t because what he did has haunted me for over 30 years.

“I didn’t deserve this. I lived a blissful childhood until I joined the scouts and met Dave Barry. He stole my youth and my innocence. His abuse left me utterly distraught, confused and lost. I lived in a constant state of fear. I was trapped. Every time I tried to leave the scouts he manipulated the situation ensuring I stayed.

“There was one occasion when a family holiday clashed with a scouting trip. I was so relieved I was going to avoid the scouting trip. But Dave Barry told my parents I had confided in him that I wanted to go with the scouts. Behind my back he arranged things so I went on the scouting trip while my family went on holiday. I will never forget the sheer terror of that time.

All of the injured parties thanked their families for their support and also thanked Detective Gardaí Gary Duggan and Maurice Shanley for their support and professionalism.

Another victim, who is now aged 44, said “I can remember him giving us alcohol at a young age. He would bring us over to the house in a group and separate us to sleep in different rooms and then abuse us. I just remember the shock and not knowing what was going on.

“He used his position of power and trust to groom us.

“I had seen him only recently in a coffee shop. When I saw him I walked out and while sitting in the car I realised I had done nothing wrong. I went back in and ordered my coffee. He was not going to have a hold over me anymore.

“David Barry might think he has destroyed our lives but this is not the case. If anyone has suffered abuse at the hands of someone please come forward and report it. The gardaí are on your side and will help you get justice.”

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