Thursday 18 December 2014

Sex attacker enjoys sun holiday after less than five months in jail

Published 18/02/2013 | 04:00

Anthony Lyons playing football on the beach in Dubai

IT'S a world away from the prison cell he was living in just two months ago.

But millionaire businessman and convicted sex attacker Anthony Lyons wasted no time in rediscovering what money can buy, after getting out of jail less than five months into his six-year sentence – much to the distress of his young victim.

On a sunshine break to Dubai with members of his family, 51-year-old Lyons appeared carefree as he enjoyed a kickabout with fellow holidaymakers.

He looked relaxed as he strolled in the 25C heat. With the iconic Burj al Arab in the background, he wandered along the beach in shorts and a football shirt.

Cheered

Fellow holidaymakers cheered as Lyons fiercely defended the goals in a friendly game of beach football.

He even waved to his wife, Eileen, who was standing on the balcony of their lavish €1,800-a-night, ocean-view family suite.

The couple checked into the five-star Jumeirah Beach Hotel with their children last week, with the former aviation executive booking under the name Tony Lyons.

The 617-room luxury venue shaped like a giant glass-fronted wave boasts a private beach, five swimming pools, 22 restaurants and is described on its website as a "beach resort that's given itself completely to the pleasures of life. . . we promise extravagance every day".

Lyons spent four-and-a-half months in jail after he was sentenced to six years in July last year for sexually assaulting a 27-year-old woman two years earlier – the judge suspended five-and-a-half years of his sentence.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard Lyons, a father of four, attacked his victim just yards from his home, creeping up behind her to ask: "Are you going to get home safely?" before rugby-tackling her into bushes.

He put his hand over her throat and mouth before sexually assaulting her but was caught when he left his umbrella at the scene and was identified by his victim.

Lyons admitted the attack but said a mixture of medication, alcohol and cough syrup had made him behave out of character.

He was released from jail in mid-December and ordered to pay €75,000 compensation to his victim, despite her request for justice to be done over any financial plea bargain.

Lyons's wife had described her husband in court as a "kind and gentle man".

Irish Independent

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