Wednesday 28 September 2016

'Eamon Cooke had girlfriend who was aged just 14' - TV3 weatherman Martin King

Robin Schiller

Published 16/08/2016 | 02:30

Paul Williams with TV3's Martin King Photo: Kyran O'Brien
Paul Williams with TV3's Martin King Photo: Kyran O'Brien

Serial paedophile Eamon Cooke had a 14-year-old girlfriend during his time with Radio Dublin, according to TV3's Martin King.

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The weatherman (53) briefly worked at the radio station alongside child abuser Cooke during the late 1970s.

Cooke died in June. He was serving a number of prison terms for the sexual abuse of children and is a suspect in the disappearance of schoolboy Philip Cairns.

King told Paul Williams in an Independent.ie podcast that he began working at Radio Dublin in 1979.

He recalled: "The first time I saw him (Cooke), he was courteous and kind and welcomed me to the station.

"I remember sitting there one morning and he was coming down the stairs. He looked like he had slept in his clothes. He opened a box of cigarettes and lit one up.

"I said 'good morning' to him and he just looked at me and grunted. I looked at a girl (working there) and asked had I done something wrong.

"I was told, 'He's in a bad mood, he's not allowed to see his girlfriend.'

"I thought of why he wasn't allowed to see her and she replied, 'She's studying for her Group Cert'. "It's an exam you did back then in second year, so she was 14, at a push 15, but unlikely."

It was the first time that King realised there was a very sinister side to Eamon Cooke that he hadn't witnessed before.

"The voice he had, it had a sense of evil - that's what I always thought about him. I just knew that wasn't right.

"It was the late '70s and early '80s and something like that could nearly go over your head but I knew that was wrong and what I thought was, did this girl's parents know?"

A bag belonging to missing Philip Cairns was recently tested for DNA, but there was no forensic evidence linking Eamon Cooke to it.

Read more of the interview in today's The Herald

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