Wednesday 22 November 2017

Court orders sex offender not 'to loiter' in areas where children are playing

* Man was allegedly seen at Mosque where children gathering for prayers
* In another incident, he was drinking near playground and seen staring at children
* Judge orders him to have 'no interaction with children'
* He is also ordered not 'to loiter' where children are playing
* Man cannot be identified by media by order of the court

Courts of Criminal Justice
Courts of Criminal Justice

Sonya McLean and Declan Brennan

A court has ordered a sex offender who was released from prison in 2010 to have no interaction with children and not to loiter where children gather.

Chief Superintendent Patrick Leahy told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court that the 63-year-old Dublin man is a risk to the public because of his predilection for juveniles and his alcohol addiction.

The application was brought by gardai under section 16 of the 2001 Sex Offenders Act which allows the court to prohibit the actions of a respondent if it is necessary to protect the public from serious harm.

Judge Martin Nolan granted an exclusion order sought by the State. He ordered that the man can not be identified in the press.

In 2007 the man was sentenced to two years imprisonment for the sexual assault of a juvenile. He was convicted again in 2008 of another sexual assault and sentenced to two years with one suspended.

In 2010 he was released from Dublin's Arbour Hill Prison, subject to a condition that he comply with the directions of the Probation Services for five years.

The court heard that he previously scored high on a risk assessment test, which would have considered his alcohol abuse problems as a contributory risk factor.

In a affidavit to the court Chief Supt Leahy said in November 2013 the man was alleged to have been drunk near a Mosque where a lot of children were gathering at night for prayers.

He is alleged to have exposed his genitals and to have groped a child and masturbated in a laneway. A file on this incident has been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

In another incident in Dublin city he was seen sitting on a wall across from a playground staring at children aged nine and ten. He was drinking at the time and when asked why he was there he appeared to be in an excited state.

The order sought that the man be prohibited from having any interaction with any child and from loitering around areas where children usually congregate.

Judge Nolan noted that the 2001 act was there to protect youngsters in the country from predators. Dean Kelly BL, defending, said that any order under the act must be proportional and argued that the prohibitions may be too vague and too broad.

The judge refused to include an order that the man not consume any alcohol in a public place. He said there are plenty of laws to deal with him being drunk and if being drunk leads him into trouble he will have to deal with the consequences.

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