'I want to die most days,' says daughter of Mayo man jailed for raping her and a boy

A man who repeatedly raped his own daughter and an unrelated boy has been sentenced to 14 years' imprisonment.

The 46-year-old Mayo resident pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to 20 counts of rape of the boy between August 1997 and April 2008.

He also pleaded guilty to 11 counts of raping his own daughter. These attacks began in mid-2007 and continued regularly for two years.

The man cannot be named to protect the identity of the victims. The court heard that rumours in the local rural community had resulted in his complete ostracism and he appeared in court without any support.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt said that the abuse and rape at the hands of “a person who ought to be protecting them rather than preying on them” had inflicted “permanent and profound damage”.

He said both of the cases were of shocking depravity. He set a headline sentence of 19 years but reduced it to 14 to give the man credit for the plea of guilty.

Mr Justice Hunt said the plea had spared the victims having to give evidence in a trial. He ordered that the man be subject to post release supervision for three years.

The court heard that the first victim had a fractured family home life. The accused was a friend of the boy's stepfather and took the 10-year-old boy under his wing and told him how “special he was”.

In his victim impact report the man, now aged 31, said this meant so much to him as a boy as he had no other father figure in his life. He said he was oblivious to the man's real motives and said the accused was very cunning and devious in his grooming.

The first rape attack took place on a fishing trip in remote Mayo and the victim said that at the time he felt numb, sick, scared and alone.

The rapes continued on a twice weekly basis up into the victim's 20s. In his mid-teens the victim moved in with his abuser because his family life had become so cruel and neglectful with no food in the house or clothing on his back.

The court heard he felt he had no other choice but to move in with the accused and he convinced himself that the abuse would stop.

“He made me believe I was worthless and he was the only one who cared about me,” he said. He said he was he endured 12 years of sexual and mental torture.

The man began raping his daughter when she was 14. The rapes continued on a weekly basis and became “like a routine” for her. The court heard the man had total physical and mental control over his daughter and told her who she could meet with or speak to.

The man's daughter was aged 14 when he first raped her. He accused her of lying to him and took her for a walk along a golf course.

When they reached some sand dunes he told her “I'm going to f**k you for lying” and told her to get down on the ground and raped her. The woman later told investigators that she was “scared s**tless”.

The man would only have to say he was “feeling stressed” for the victim to know he was going to rape her. In her victim impact report the woman said she was terrified of her father.

She said her father would threaten her and once told her he would kill her. She was too scared to go to sleep because she would suffer night terrors and dream of the abuse.

She said she used to self-harm to deal with the effects of the abuse and later turned to misuse of alcohol and drugs. She said she was terrified to get counselling and didn't want to relive the abuse and didn't think it would help.

“I don't care for my life. I want to die most days. I feel so broke inside,” she said.

She said she could “not stand” men and believed that there was something inside every man that made him capable of rape. She said she freaked out at the prospect of sex in a relationship.

The male victim said he felt nothing but hatred and disgust for his abuser and also for himself for not speaking up. He said by his actions the man was a “manipulative paedophile” who had stolen his self worth and his “very being”.

“The damage this animal has inflicted on my mental health will last to my dying breath. I don't know who I am,” he said.

The victim said that at the age of 20 he still felt like a scared 10-year-old boy and was like a “beaten down dog”. He said he had battled suicide and left his own children with a father “incapable of compassion”.

After his arrest the man initially claimed he was in a relationship with the male victim. The court heard this was untrue and the man accepted to gardaí that none of what he did could be justified or right.

He said he was grateful the victims had come forward because he couldn't live with the guilt.

“I'm sorry. I feel complete hatred for myself,” he said. He claimed he was the victim of child sex abuse himself.



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