Friday 17 November 2017

Man who drugged pregnant girlfriend and filmed himself sexually assaulting her is 'a danger to society' - judge

Stock photo
Stock photo

Isabel Hayes and Sonya McLean

A MAN who drugged his heavily-pregnant girlfriend and filmed himself sexually assaulting her has been described by a judge as a danger to society and to women.

Ms Justice Deirdre Murphy sentenced the Dublin man (53), who can't be named for legal reasons, to seven and half years in prison.

The judge said it was “shocking” that the man felt himself entitled to abuse anyone in this way, noting that the victim was his partner, the mother of his child and eight months pregnant with their second child together.

She described his actions as “sneaky, underhand and clandestine” and said the 40-year-old woman felt “humiliated, embarrassed and degraded” particularly as the videos of the assault were played in court.

She suspended unconditionally the final six months of his sentence but said she would suspended a further two years on the strict condition that the man engage with a sexual offenders treatment programme. He was also registered a sex offender.

“Any person who is willing to drug another person for his own sexual needs, is a danger to society,” Ms Justice Murphy said before she later added “or any woman unfortunate enough to be his next partner.”

She said it was ironic that the man's “arrogance, vanity and perverse” behaviour in creating videos of the abuse was the “compelling evidence” which led to his conviction and justice being served.

The man, who still maintains his innocence, was found guilty by a Central Criminal Court jury last month of three counts of sexually assaulting his partner on three occasions in November 2014.

The jury of six men and six women was unable to reach a verdict on two further allegations that the man raped his partner in December 2014, days before she was due to give birth to their second child.

The man pleaded not guilty to all charges. He faces a retrial on the rape charges at a later date.

Ms Justice Murphy said the jury rejected the man's evidence during the trial that his partner was a willing participant and “wide awake” at the time of the assaults.

The judge said, however, that the videos clearly indicated that the woman was “not merely asleep but in fact insensate” .

She noted that the woman told gardaí that after waking up sore some mornings, her boyfriend told her that she had fallen asleep “so I helped myself”.

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