Thursday 17 August 2017

Woman at centre of McCabe allegations 'to sue Tusla'

'She is expected to accuse Tusla of negligence, a breach of privacy and of causing traumatic stress and nervous shock to her, as well as stress for her family' Stock photo: Getty Images/Ingram Publishing
'She is expected to accuse Tusla of negligence, a breach of privacy and of causing traumatic stress and nervous shock to her, as well as stress for her family' Stock photo: Getty Images/Ingram Publishing
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

The young woman at the centre of the Maurice McCabe sexual allegation scandal is set to initiate her own legal action against Tusla, the Irish Independent has learned.

It's understood the Child and Family Agency has failed to make contact with the woman, who is in her early 20s, for at least two years.

She is expected to accuse Tusla of negligence, a breach of privacy and of causing traumatic stress and nervous shock to her, as well as stress for her family.

She was aged just six at the time of the first allegations.

The allegations were reported to gardaí at the time, who fully investigated the alleged offence. They sent a file to the DPP recommending no prosecution.

The DPP directed no prosecution, making the observation that it was difficult to establish whether the alleged offence constituted a crime at all.

The woman insists that the latest allegations levelled against Sergeant McCabe in 2013 were not made by her, but instead emanated as a result of the so-called 'copy and paste' blunder made by a counsellor. The initial allegations were completely different than those that ended up on the Tusla system following the administrative error.

She attended ordinary traumatic counselling with an agency of the HSE in 2013 before attending two follow-up appointments organised to deal with her historical allegations of sexual abuse, which were never proven.

She first learned through the media that the allegations had been lodged again, unbeknown to her or her family.

The woman now feels she has effectively been "catapulted" back into the centre of a controversy that has resurfaced through no fault of her own.

"She feels that she has been portrayed as someone who has concocted this whole thing in 2013," a source told the Irish Independent.

She will allege that she has not heard from Tusla for over two years and that she has received no explanation or apology for what has happened.

The woman also claims that people in her locality are aware of her role in the McCabe controversy and that this is causing her deep distress.

Central to the woman's case against Tusla is the fact that allegations associated with her were left on the Tusla system for a period of around two years.

The young woman will also say that the information about her case has been shared among officials associated with Tusla and possibly beyond this organisation.

Tusla declined to comment last night.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News