Saturday 24 August 2019

Sinn Féin stays silent on naming of election candidate during case

Jailed: Seamus Marley was found guilty of raping two teenage boys
Jailed: Seamus Marley was found guilty of raping two teenage boys

Cormac McQuinn and Brion Hoban

A Sinn Féin councillor who is running again in this month's local elections was named in the victim impact statement following the rape trial of an alleged IRA man.

One of the men who was raped while he was a teenager told the court that he had sought help from Cllr Pearse McGeough.

But he said that after the call, he knew he was on his own.

Sinn Féin local election candidate Mr McGeough was named at the Central Criminal Court in a victim impact statement, as Seamus Marley was jailed for seven years for the rape of two teenage boys two decades ago.

Marley (45), with an address at Belfield Court, Stillorgan Road, Dublin, had pleaded not guilty at the Central Criminal Court to charges of raping the two boys in Co Louth on dates in the early 1990s.

Last night both Mr McGeough and Sinn Féin were silent on the election hopeful being named during the case.

In his victim impact statement, the younger victim said that in the years subsequent to the abuse by Marley, he suffered panic attacks and experienced a "deep depression so black" it was hard to put into words.

He said he ended up in hospital and called Mr McGeough to ask for help, but that after the call he knew he was on his own.

Mr McGeough is currently a Sinn Féin election candidate in Co Louth.

He did not respond to the Irish Independent's attempts to contact him for comment on being named in the court case.

Sinn Féin was asked if it was appropriate that Mr McGeough was a candidate for the party, given how he was named during proceedings in the Central Criminal Court. The party did not respond at time of going to press.

An article on Sinn Féin's Co Louth website said Mr McGeough was selected to run as a candidate last November.

It says he was first elected to Louth County Council in 2004 and was re-elected in 2009 and 2014.

"Pearse has been a Republican all his life and is heavily involved in the community in many projects," the website also adds.

Irish Independent

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