Retired surgeon denies assaulting six teenage boys

A retired surgeon has gone on trial accused of indecently assaulting six teenage boys while he was treating them as patients.

Dr Michael Shine (85) denies eight charges of committing indecent assault at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital and at his private clinic - both in Drogheda, Co Louth - on dates between 1964 and 1991.

During his arraignment at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today, Dr Shine replied: "I absolutely deny that allegation", to each of the charges.

Dr Michael Shine. Picture: Courtpix

Opening the case for the prosecution, Bernard Condon SC said that the six complainants were all teenage boys at the time that Dr Shine allegedly touched them in the genital areas while treating them for injuries such as cuts to a knee, a broken ankle, an injury to a finger and an injured toe.

The first complainant, now aged 65, testified he was aged 13 when he attended with his mother at the hospital in 1964. He was suffering from a cyst on his chest which he said was quite sore.

In a cubicle a nurse carried out an initial examination before telling them the doctor would be with them. He said that Dr Shine came into the cubicle and his mother left.

He said he didn't know if she was asked to leave or if she left of her own accord. He said a curtain was pulled and he believes he was just wearing his underpants at this point.

He said the defendant felt his chest and pressed into his stomach. Dr Shine told him “it all works together” before then massaging the boy's testicles, the witness said.

After a minute or so of this Dr Shine again rubbed his stomach and repeated “it all works together”, he said. He said he understood that this meant his testicles and chest worked together.

The examination was over quickly and he dressed and left with his mother. He told counsel: “It was just an ordinary examination as far as I was concerned”.

Counsel for Dr Shine will cross-examine the witness tomorrow.

In his opening Mr Condon told the jury that a second complainant was taken to the hospital with a finger injury and Dr Shine felt his testicles and penis.

Another complainant will say he was in his late teens when he went to Dr Shine to treat a knee injury and Dr Shine squeezed his testicles, Mr Condon said.

He told the jury that a fourth complainant was 15 when he saw Dr Shine for a broken ankle bone and the accused allegedly groped his genitals.

The fifth complainant will testify that he was 16 when Dr Shine allegedly groped him, he said.

Dr Shine was allegedly treating a sixth boy for hernia and undescended testicle when he massaged his genitals to the point of ejaculation, the jury heard.

Mr Shine, of Wellington Road in Dublin 4 is accused of committing the indecent assaults at the hospital on unknown dates between 1964 and 1965, 1970 and 1972, 1975 and 1976 and, finally, on a unknown date between 1988 and 1991.

He is also accused of indecently assaulting a male on two occasions in a clinic in Drogheda on unknown dates in 1973 and 1974 and in 1975.

The trial continues before Judge Cormac Quinn and a jury of four men and eight women. It is expected to last two weeks.


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