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Thursday 21 September 2017

Rehab plan drawn up for rapist Murphy

Shane Phelan

Shane Phelan

THE Probation Service is drawing up a supervision and rehabilitation plan for freed rapist Larry Murphy, officials said last night.

Murphy (45) has been placed in accommodation at a secret location by the service following unprecedented public hysteria over his release.

He is said to be considering undertaking counselling following the hostile reaction he has faced since being set free last Thursday.

Probation Service officials are now drawing up a joint management plan with senior gardai, who fear there is a high risk Murphy could re-offend.

However, officials were tight-lipped last night over the specifics of what would be involved in any rehabilitation programme.

Sources said that, in general terms, the supervision plan for Murphy would involve his "secure resettlement", as well as the provision of professional supports to minimise the risk of him re-offending.

The finer details of the plan are expected to be finalised in the coming days. But it remains to be seen how committed Murphy is to undergoing treatment.

The former carpenter refused treatment and failed to express any remorse during his 10-and-a-half years in prison for the rape, abduction and attempted murder of a young businesswoman in Carlow in 2000.

He was released early from his 15-year sentence after getting automatic remission for "good behaviour".

Officials cautioned that Murphy cannot be compelled to complete a treatment programme and could walk away at any time.

"Whatever he does, it will have to be undertaken on a voluntary basis," said one source.

Senior gardai were extremely worried about the furore over Murphy's release as stress can be a major factor in cases where freed rapists re-offend.

Justice Minister Dermot Ahern also privately expressed concern and urged the Probation Service to do "whatever was necessary" to get Murphy into a prisoner programme.



Flashpoint

Fears Murphy's release could lead to a flashpoint situation intensified after a large crowd gathered outside a half-way house for criminals in Dublin in the mistaken belief that he was inside.

Murphy threw himself at the mercy of authorities on Friday night after being pursued for two days by the media.

He agreed to accept the help of the Probation Service after being strongly urged to do so by senior gardai and a prison chaplain, whose help he sought following his release.

Irish Independent

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