A MAN charged with 173 counts of rape and sexual assault on three children has been remanded in custody.
To protect the victims, Judge Seamus Hughes banned any reporting of the defendant's name or address.
The court heard how the abuse started in 2001, when the youngest child was six years old, and continued until 2010.
The defendant had been in a relationship with the children's mother. The court heard that the children are now in the care of the health board.
He was remanded in custody to appear at a special sitting of the District Court in Athlone next Monday.