Cork court: Man aged 77 jailed for sexually assaulting granddaughter

Judge Helen Boyle imposed sentence of two years with the last eight months suspended. 
Cork court: Man aged 77 jailed for sexually assaulting granddaughter

The 77-year-old had denied the charges but was found guilty of the two sexual assaults by a jury at Cork Circuit Criminal Court in September.

A 77-year-old man is commencing a 16-month jail term for sexually assaulting his granddaughter when she was aged 8 to ten years old.

Judge Helen Boyle imposed sentence of two years, with the last eight months suspended, on the accused man. 

He cannot be named as it would identify the complainanant.

Serious offence 

“I take the view that this is a serious offence by virtue of the breach of trust and the serious impact on the victim,” Judge Boyle said at Cork Circuit Criminal Court.

The assaults took the form of the accused putting his hands inside the child’s clothes and on to her vagina.

“An aggravating factor is the breach of trust – you were in your 60s and the child was eight to ten years old.

“Another aggravating factor is the serious impact on the young victim. 

"She can be rightfully proud of the person she has grown up to be,” the judge said.

Health concerns of defendant

Siobhán Lankford SC for the defendant outlined the many serious health concerns the defendant has at his age.

The 77-year-old had denied the charges but was found guilty of the two sexual assaults by a jury at Cork Circuit Criminal Court in September.

He had no previous convictions of any kind.

Victim impact statement 

The judge commented on the eloquence of the victim impact statement and said, “She is to be commended for her bravery in coming forward and her descriptions of the impact this offence had on her. 

"She said it means that all of her happy memories she should have had about her grandparents were taken over by a dark and traumatic cloud, as a result of the abuse by her grandfather.

“She had long and difficult conversations with her own parents and attempted to end her life. And she asked the court to regard her as a survivor.

“She says that today is the day she will put the abuse behind her and that she did the best for herself, for other survivors and other children who are presently victims.” 

Ms Lankford SC said there were grave concerns about the mental health of the accused.

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