Saturday 15 December 2018

Man (41) avoids prison after being caught with graphic videos and images of child abuse

(stock photo)
(stock photo)

Declan Brennan

A man who was caught in possession of videos and images of child abuse eight years ago has avoided jail after a judge heard he since self reported for therapy.

Eoin Kennedy (41) had 577 images and 31 videos showing children as young as three being abused.

Gardai went to Kennedy's place of work in December 2010 when an Internet Protocol address at this company was linked by Interpol to the downloading of child pornography.

Kennedy was working there as the computer systems administrator and immediately owned up to having downloaded the files onto a laptop at work.

He gave the investigators permission for a search of his home in Co Offaly where files were found on two more laptops and two “home build” computers.

This computer equipment was not examined until 2017 due to a lack of resources at the computer crime unit.

Kennedy, formerly of Walsh Island, Tullamore pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of child pornography at a premises on Jamestown Road, Inchicore, Dublin on December 2, 2010.

Some of the images and videos showed children in sexual acts with children and being abused by adults.

Marc Murphy BL, defending, said this case had being hanging over Kennedy for eight years. In that time Kennedy attended psychological services which Judge Melanie Greally described as a lengthy and intensive.

She said that this therapeutic intervention had minimised the risk of re-offending and said this showed it was possible to desist from this type of behaviour.

Judge Greally said that Kennedy now recognised that the production of child pornography material was child abuse and those that consumed it as contributing to that. She said he was remorseful and is now a father of one in a stable and supportive relationship and living in the Czech Republic.

The judge said there were many exceptional aspects to the manner in which he met the investigation and prosecution including his steps to address his own risk.

She suspended a custodial sentence of two years for two years on condition he keep the peace for that period.

At the end of the hearing Judge Greally acceded to an application from the DPP for the destruction of all the computer equipment seized in the investigation.

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