Doctor before court on 237 sex charges
A CORK doctor appeared a District Court yesterday on 237 indecent assault and sexual assault charges involving 41 women over a 29-year period from 1966 to 1995.
Dr James Barry of 12, Sydney Terrace, Wellington Road, Cork was arrested at Lauriston Lodge, Glanmire at 7.10am on October 30 and was taken to the Bridewell Garda Station where he was charged with the alleged offences.
Det Sgt Michael Comyns said that Dr Barry, when all the charges were read to him by gardai, replied: ``I will get advice from senior counsel, I have no comment to make.''
The charges included sexual assaults under Section 2 of the Criminal Law Rape Amendment Act 1990, indecent assaults contrary to Common Law and indecent assaults contrary to Common Law under Section 10 of the Criminal Law Rape Act 1990.
Insp Ger Dilane said the Gardai had no objection to Dr Barry being granted bail but he asked for a substantial independent surety in view of the seriousness of the charges and the fact that Dr Barry had left the country on a previous occasion.
Defending solicitor Pat Horgan strenuously opposed the application for an independent surety,stating that the gardai have always been aware of Dr Barry's movements. He had previously answered all charges brought against him including minor charges before the District Court which were dismissed.
``There is not a shred of evidence to justify this application. You do not believe for a moment that he is going to flee the jurisdiction,'' said Mr Horgan.Sgt Comyns said that Dr Barry had left the country and did not turn up for an interview with gardai as he promised after his home at Farranlea Grove was searched in June of 1995. He believed he returned to Cork only after being found by media people abroad.
Mr Horgan said that Dr Barry was in hospital in Dublin following the search and he had written to gardai inviting them to interview him there.
Sgt Comyns said after getting legal advice it was decided not to interview him in the hospital.Mr Horgan then said that Dr Barry had returned to Ireland voluntarily in 1996 and that while he was in England the guards were aware of his address there. No charges were pending against him when he returned.
His client was an elderly man who had no intention of leaving the jurisdiction.
Mr Horgan said he wanted to protest strongly over the actions of the Director of Public Prosecutions who did not act for 12 months after the file was sent to him, adding: ``My client has got the worst of all possible worlds from the DPP.''
At the start of the case Mr Horgan said the arrest warrant was signed on October 29 and he wanted to reserve his position regarding its legality.
``Dr Barry reserves his right to say this was further intimidation by the Gardai against him.He has always been available. He appeared in the District Court on minor charges which were dismissed. He successfully defended a Circuit Court action brought against him and was awarded costs. He has made applications to the Superior Courts and has appeared before the Medical Council.
``He has not been out of sight as far as the gardai are concerned and I am mystified that a sergeant would disturb my client from his sleep to arrest him and transport him to a garda station at 7am,'' said Mr Horgan. He added Dr Barry was unable to contact his solicitor after his arrest because he did not have his home number and he had to wait for office opening hours to do so.
Judge Riordan remanded Dr Barry on his own bail of £500 to appear before him on November 6 next. The defendant, who was in court, through Mr Horgan consented to handing over his passport and to signing on every Monday at Mayfield Garda Station.