Thursday 19 April 2018

Garda charged with having hundreds of child porn images at his home

Eimear Cotter

A GARDA has appeared in court charged with having hundreds of images of child porn at his home.

The charges relate to images and movie files of child explicit sex, child exposure and computer graphic images.

The long-serving member of the force, who is in his 50s, was allegedly caught with more than 650 images of child porn following a search of his home in west Dublin by detectives.

Judge David McHugh adjourned the case to a date in October to allow the officer speak to his legal team.

The garda, who cannot be named by order of the court, appeared before Blanchardstown District Court charged with possession of child pornography, contrary to Section 6(1) of the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act, 1998.

The alleged incident took place at an unknown date between July 20 and August 2 2011 at his home in west Dublin.

It is alleged that the officer had 92 images of child explicit sex, 136 images of child exposure, 85 movies of child explicit sex, one movie file of child exposure and 341 other child porn images.

The case was before the court for DPP's directions on the charge.

A State solicitor said the DPP has directed summary disposal of the matter in the District Court on a guilty plea only. This means that if the garda denies the charge it will go forward for trial to the Circuit Court.

Defence solicitor Dara Robinson asked for the disclosure of any documents relating to the allegation.

Mr Robinson also applied for legal aid, saying the accused has a substantial mortgage and is struggling financially.

Gardai said there was no objection to free legal aid.

Judge McHugh adjourned the matter to a date in October and imposed reporting restrictions on the case.

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