Thursday 18 December 2014

Rape victims face battle to recoup €4.7m award

Dearbhail McDonald and Allison Bray

Published 23/11/2012 | 05:00

Married father-of-five Joseph Carrick (76), who was ordered to pay a total of €4.7m to two victims, has had his bank accounts and up to six pensions frozen following the High Court jury award .

Jacqueline O'Toole, who was raped and made pregnant by Carrick when she was a schoolgirl, was awarded a record €4m in damages .

Her cousin and best friend Geraldine Nolan, who was also raped and abused by Carrick, received €700,000 in damages from a separate High Court jury.

Retired company director Carrick, who is facing a third civil action by a man who alleges he was also abused by him as a teenager, did not defend any of the civil cases.

He dropped his lawyers last month, saying that he could not afford to instruct them as his financial situation "has deteriorated".

Carrick was served with notice of the freezing orders on his accounts on Wednesday at his Carysfort Wood home in Blackrock shortly after Ms O'Toole was awarded €4m by a jury.

He will have an opportunity today to argue that a temporary order preventing him from reducing his assets below €5m should be lifted and may resist bids for disclosure of assets.

Carrick is believed to have received €1m in 2009 from the sale of his half-share in a shipping company and may hold up to six pensions. His victims also believe he owns his family home, apartments, a bungalow and a half-share in a farm.

In court papers, the women say they are "fearful" that Carrick will dispose of the properties as well as money in his accounts and pensions.

The Director of Public Prosecutions tried four times to prosecute Carrick. In the first two trials, the charges were withdrawn and juries in the third and fourth trials could not reach a verdict.

Last October, the DPP told Carrick, who denied the charges, that she would not be proceedings with any further trials against him.

But this week, two separate juries awarded €4.7m against Carrick, who was described in the High Court as "a monster" and "an evil paedophile".

Kathrin Coleman of Dublin law firm Lavelle Coleman, who represented Ms O'Toole and Mrs Nolan, said that the cousins could face a battle to recover the judgments.

"As Mr Carrick's assets are quite dispersed, we hope to be able to obtain court orders requiring him to disclose his financial position," she said. "The verdicts together show the extent to which the jurors were moved by the accounts."

Irish Independent

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