ONE of the four victims of convicted sex offender John O'connell has called for such abuse cases to be heard behind closed doors in future to protect the privacy and dignity of the victims.
The teenager, who was one of the four girls abused by John O'connell, spoke briefly outside Tralee Circuit Criminal Court on Friday after her abuser was jailed for eight years.
The young woman, whose name is being witheld to protect her and the other victims' privacy, said that she had found the trial almost as difficult as the abuse because people not involved in the case could listen freely to highly personal evidence in court.
Flanked by family members, friends and other supporters the visibly upset young woman said that while the outcome of the trial made the trauma "worth it in the end" steps should be taken by the state to make it less traumatic for victims of sex assaults to come forward and face their abusers in court.
However, she did encourage all victims of similar abuse to come forward to ensure their abusers face justice.
"If nobody comes forward the only person that has won is the perpetrator," she said.