Monday 16 September 2019

New alleged abuse case victim speaks to gardai

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Ken Foy and Kevin Doyle

Man at centre of investigation will not be interviewed until New Year.

A new alleged victim has come forward to accuse a former politician of child abuse, the Sunday Independent has learned.

The alleged victim contacted gardai of their own volition and spoke to detectives over several hours on Friday, according to an informed source.

The garda investigation was launched after a woman in her 30s claimed that she was abused in the early 1990s. It is believed that she first made a statement to the Garda National Protection Services Bureau around three months ago.

The Irish Independent reported last week that the woman tried to make a complaint about the former politician in 2005. However informed sources said that gardai had so far failed to find any record of a previous complaint or report against the politician.

The investigation is in the early stages and the former politician is not expected to be interviewed until the New Year. However, it is understood that detectives have spoken to a number of witnesses about the allegations of abuse.

Meanwhile, gardai have embarked on a separate inquiry to examine how details about the investigation were leaked to the media. The Irish Independent, which broke the story last Wednesday, reported that an unnamed former government minister was being investigated over the allegations of child abuse.

On Thursday, the former Fianna Fail minister Pat Carey issued a statement, saying that he did not know if the allegations related to him. He absolutely and unconditionally denied any alleged impropriety and said he was "deeply upset" at being contacted by journalists.

Mr Carey stepped down as Fianna Fail's director of elections and resigned from a number of community and voluntary organisations, including as chairman of the Irish Red Cross, to allow any investigations to take place.

Mr Carey remains as a consultant with DHR Communications. The firm confirmed to the Irish Independent that it hadn't "discontinued that relationship with him".

Mr Carey issued the statement through his solicitor on Thursday.

It said he "absolutely and unconditionally denies any impropriety in this matter or in his 30 years experience as a teacher, as a community worker and in his public life".

It said Mr Carey "does not know if the allegations mentioned in the national press relate to him, but given the unfounded speculation that has arisen, he is taking this action of his own volition and with a heavy heart."

Sunday Independent

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