Sunday 16 December 2018

Prosecution finishes in trial of retired surgeon accused of groping teenage boys

Retired surgeon Dr Michael Shine (85) at the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court Pic Collins Courts.
Retired surgeon Dr Michael Shine (85) at the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court Pic Collins Courts.

Declan Brennan

The prosecution case has finished in the trial of a retired surgeon who denies groping teenage boys.

Michael Shine (85) of Wellington Rd. in Dublin 4 has pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to eight charges of indecently assaulting patients at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital and at his private clinic, both in Drogheda, Co Louth, on dates between 1964 and 1991.

The jury has heard evidence from six men who have described Mr Shine allegedly groping their genitalia during medical examinations for injuries such as cuts to a knee, a broken ankle, an injury to a finger, an in-growing toenail and a stomach cyst.

On day seven of the trial, Richard Stephens, a expert medical witness, told Bernard Condon SC, prosecuting, that there was no medical reasons for these examinations to include examinations of the genitalia.

Asked about the evidence of the second complainant who alleged Mr Shine felt his testicles during a follow up examination after a traffic accident, Mr Stephens told Hugh Hartnett SC, defending, that

“It's never unreasonable to examine the groin in a male in a trauma case” such as an accident.

He agreed with Bernard Condon SC, prosecuting, that the assault on this patient was alleged to have taken place during a follow up examination and not when the patient was first admitted after the crash.

Read More: Alleged victim of indecent assault went to gardai after hearing about 'campaign against' doctor, court hears

Mr Stephens told Judge Cormac Quinn that an examination of the groin was different to and did not involve an examination of the testes and would be done with a sheet covering the testes and genitalia.

He that it was never wrong to examine a testicle as long as it was brief and appropriate. He said such an examination should only take a moment unless there was a problem.

He agreed with Mr Hartnett that in a busy clinic sometimes shortcuts from best medical practice might be taken.

The trial continues tomorrow before Judge Quinn and a jury of four men and eight women.

Mr Shine denies committing indecent assaults at the hospital on unknown dates between 1964 and 1965, 1970 and 1972, 1975 and 1976 and, finally, on a unknown date between 1988 and 1991.

He further denies indecently assaulting a male on two occasions in a clinic in Drogheda on unknown dates in 1973 and 1974 and in 1975.

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