independent

Sunday 25 August 2019

Guerin had 1,000+ child porn images

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court
Dublin Circuit Criminal Court

Nicola Donnelly

A brother of murdered crime journalist Veronica Guerin has admitted possessing nearly 1,000 images of child porn in his home.

Martin Guerin - who is an older brother of the late Veronica and also a brother of Cllr Jimmy Guerin - has also admitted to knowingly possessing 146 child porn video files four years ago.

The 68-year-old appeared before Judge Patricia Ryan at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court yesterday where he was formally arraigned on the charge.

Dressed in a beige jacket, a check shirt, dark trousers and carrying a flat cap, the retired man stood in the body of Court 5 in the Criminal Courts of Justice on Parkgate Street when his name was called.

When the court registrar asked him is he Martin Gueirn, he replied: 'Yes.'

Putting the charge to him that on September 17, 2014 he did knowingly possess 901 images of child porn and 146 child porn video files at his home address at Portmarnock Drive, Portmarnock in Co Dublin, he replied "Guilty."

The maximum penalty for the offence under Section 6 (1) of the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998, is a fine not exceeding €5,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or both.

Defence barrister Philipp Rahn, BL, told Judge Ryan that sentencing should take around 30 minutes and a date of October 23 was allocated.

Guerin was charged with the offence in February by Sergeant Brian Pentony of Malahide Garda Station and brought before Swords District Court.

HE was sent forward to the Circuit Criminal Court in April, as exclusively revealed by the Star, as the charge was deemed too serious to be dealt with at district court level.

Guerin has been remanded on continuing bail - with no conditions - on his own bond of €100 to appear before the court on the October date when the full facts of the case will be heard before he is sentenced.

His solicitor Brian Coveney's application for legal aid was granted in April after the court heard Guerin is retired.

Brian Meehan, a member of crime boss John Gilligan's gang, was convicted of murdering Guerin's sister Veronica on June 26, 1996 and sentenced to life imprisonment in 1997.

Ms Guerin was fatally shot while stopped at traffic lights on the Naas Dual Carriageway at Newlands Cross.

The shooting caused national outrage and within a week of her murder, the Government enacted the Proceeds of Crime Act 1996 and the Criminal Assets Bureau Act 1996, so that assets purchased with money obtained through crime would be seized. This led to the formation of Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB). Gilligan was tried for the murder but was acquitted in 2001.

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