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Thursday 18 September 2014

Sex offender jailed for assaulting two teen girls on Luas

Fiona Ferguson and Sonya McLean

Published 29/04/2014 | 02:30

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The arrival of the Luas which caused a relative value surge of 20pc plus for properties in Dundrum and Ballinteer.
The arrival of the Luas which caused a relative value surge of 20pc plus for properties in Dundrum and Ballinteer.

A serial sex offender who assaulted two teenage girls on the Luas while they were en route to a Rihanna concert has been jailed for two years.

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John Daly (53) was arrested by gardai three months later as he was about to board the tram at the O2 in Dublin following a One Direction concert.

He had been nominated as a suspect after gardai viewed CCTV footage from the tram when the then 13-year-old and 16-year-old girls had reported him. Daly admitted during interview that he had deliberately gotten on the Luas, heading for the Rihanna concert, to touch young girls and get sexually aroused.

He said he had it "in my head to do it" and had been doing it "for my own satisfaction".

Daly, of Cabra Park, Phibsboro, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to two charges of sexual assault on October 3, 2011.

In February 2000 he was sentenced to three years with one suspended by Mr Justice Paul Carney in the Central Criminal Court for other sex charges.

This sentence was appealed by the Director of Public Prosecutions on the basis of undue leniency and increased to a six-year term by the Court of Criminal Appeal.

SHOCKING

Daly had pleaded guilty to attempted rape and indecent assault charges relating to two young girls on dates from 1980 to 1984, and to aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault of a woman on dates from 1997 to 1998.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring noted that the concert would have attracted a young and predominantly female audience. She said the incident had been a "shocking and damaging event" for the girls.

Gda Caitriona Gilmartin had told Lisa Dempsey BL, prosecuting, that the girls had been brought to Dublin by one of their fathers that day and he had put them on the Luas at Heuston Station when they noticed the heavy traffic.

The tram was busy and Daly approached one of the girls, stood to her right-hand side and put his hands between her legs. The teenager later reported to gardai that she felt she had "no way out" because she had been squashed against a bar.

Daly touched the other teenager's backside after she bumped into him and apologised for standing on his toe.

Judge Ring said that Daly has indicated that he wanted to get treatment and he had been assessed as suitable for the "Safer Lives Programme." She said it was to everyone's benefit that treatment should be a part of sentencing but she could not overlook his record and the nature of the offending.

She imposed a four-year sentence and suspended the final two years on conditions including that he be under the supervision of the Probation Service during the suspended portion of the sentence and attend the "Safer Lives Programme".

Irish Independent

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