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Monday 22 September 2014

Children exposed to porn film in guise of 'My Little Pony'

Ray Managh

Published 26/07/2006 | 00:11

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THREE young schoolgirls have been awarded ?20,000 after they were exposed to a pornography film which their mother bought believing it to be a children's movie.

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The girls, aged between six and 13, were exposed to between 15 to 20 minutes of the hardcore film which was sold as a children's story about a girl and her pet pony. The case was taken against the manufacturer and supplier, and the shop where the film was bought.

Frederick Gilligan, counsel for the girls, told the Circuit Civil Court yesterday the DVD had been bought by the girls' mother in Eurospar, Ballyowen, Lucan, Co Dublin.

The DVD, 'My Little Pony', was thought to have been about the antics of a girl's pet pony but turned out to be a blue movie.

Mr Gilligan told Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Matthew Deery, that when the girls returned home they went to their TV room to watch the DVD and had been exposed to a film which had turned out to be of a hardcore pornographic nature for between 15 to 20 minutes.

A claim for damages had been taken on the girls' behalf against Prism Leisure Corporations PLC, and Anthony O'Connor, trading as Eurospar, Ballyowen, Lucan. Mr Justice Deery said he could not make an order restraining public identification of the children but suggested the media should act sympathetically in that regard.

Mr Gilligan said the DVD had been bought in April 2005 and the children had been shocked and distressed as a result of viewing it.

The video had been found to contain explicit pornographic material and part of it contained scenes of a graphic sexual nature. Mr Gilligan said the youngest of the three, who was aged five at the time of the incident, had experienced mild behavioural disturbance which had manifested itself in a refusal to watch television of any kind.

She had also suffered intermittent episodes of day and nocturnal enuresis, or "bedwetting", for a period of six months after the viewing.

Mr Gilligan said the older girls, aged 10 and 12 at the time, had also been somewhat traumatised by the incident, but to a lesser extent given their ages.

The entire incident, however, had been the cause of some considerable concern for the parents of the girls.

Mr Justice Deery approved a ?20,000 settlement offer on behalf of the defendants and ruled that ?8,000 be lodged in court funds on behalf of the six-year-old girl and ?6,000 each in the case of the 11- and 13-year-old girls.

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