Twisted paedophile Eamon 'Captain' Cooke carried around picture of young victim
Serial paedophile Eamon "Captain" Cooke kept a framed etching of him with an 11-year-old girl he was suspected of abusing.
The sexual predator used the picture in a bizarre attempt to illustrate how close he was to the child and to explain why he breached a court order to stay away from her.
Cooke admitted taking the girl away for "trips" but vehemently denied that he was sexually abusing her.
"We're just very close friends," he said before claiming that the child had asked him to run away with her. On one occasion the girl ran away, undercover gardaí followed her to Cooke's home.
When they forced their way into the house, the officers found him semi-clothed sitting on a bed while the child was hiding behind a chair. The authorities were so concerned about Cooke's influence over his victim that they were forced to have her placed in care.
But his psychological hold over the girl was such that she refused to tell care workers what had happened to her.
While he was on the run in 2002, Cooke contacted this reporter to complain that he was being unfairly denied access to the child in the photograph.
"She (girl's name) would ask me to run off with her to London and Cork and places like that and we would go off for a few days at a time. It was great fun," he said.
The paedophile then sent a letter which purported to come from the child, but was clearly written by an adult.
The former pirate radio boss, who died almost two weeks ago, has been linked to the abduction and murder of Dublin schoolboy Philip Cairns in 1986.
Gardai launched a fresh investigation into one of the country's oldest child abduction mysteries after a woman claimed she saw Cooke beating Philip Cairns over the head at his radio studio in Inchicore.
They are trying to locate an area of land which was being used by Cooke in the Dublin Mountains at the time of the abduction and which they intend searching for possible remains.
Separately detectives are also following up claims that a second woman who was then a child victim of Cooke's, was instructed by Cooke to dump Philip Cairns' schoolbag in a laneway six days after he vanished.
However the missing boy's mother Alice told the Irish Independent yesterday that she was not aware if her son knew the pirate radio boss.
She said: "He never mentioned him (Cooke) and as far as I know, he didn't know him. I never saw him before and never heard Philip talk about him.
"He (Philip) had hardly ever been in the local record shop. He was just starting secondary school and left here to go back to school. After that, we just don't know still.
"I'm glad the gardaí are following any line of investigation because it shows they are determined to find out what happened. I'm open-minded about it.
"You're always hoping there will be something, a new lead, but then when it happens, you have more questions."