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Sunday 20 January 2019

Gibney raped teenage Olympic prospect

Edel Kennedy

AN Olympic hopeful has revealed how George Gibney raped and threatened her during a swimming trip to Florida.

The woman, who is now 38, is still suffering the after-effects. She takes daily medication and attends weekly counselling sessions.

She was 17 and one of Ireland's brightest hopes for the Olympic games when the swimming coach raped her.

"He jumped on me and raped me there on the bed," she said.

"He said if I told anybody, he would sue my family and nobody would believe me because he was George Gibney and he would bankrupt my family. Then he left."

Gibney avoided facing seven charges of alleged rape in 1994 when the Supreme Court ruled that the accusations were so old he could not adequately defend himself. He left for the US 10 years ago and is now living in Orange County, Florida.

The young woman's ordeal took place when she travelled to Tampa, Florida to prepare for the national championships in Belfast. She is pursuing a civil case against Gibney, the Olympic Council of Ireland and George Gibney.

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