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Fiona's horror story of father's decade of rape is being made into movie

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Patrick O'Brien

Patrick O'Brien

Fiona Doyle

Fiona Doyle

Jim Doyle & Fiona Doyle with their sons (L to R) Lewis and Paddy

Jim Doyle & Fiona Doyle with their sons (L to R) Lewis and Paddy

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Patrick O'Brien

The woman who was systematically raped by her father for nearly a decade has revealed that her life story is to be turned into a film.

Fiona Doyle (47) was speaking after her father, Patrick O'Brien, had his prison sentence for his crimes extended by the Court of Criminal Appeal.

O'Brien (74) was found guilty of the sex assault crimes at their home in Dun Laoghaire from 1973 to 1982

He had initially been sentenced to 12 years with nine suspended owing to his age and ill health, but yesterday he heard that while the 12-year sentence was the correct one, he would be entitled to only three years suspended, which effectively tripled his sentence.

The court said last week that despite serious illness and advanced age, O'Brien cannot be considered a person for whom prison would be "impossible to tolerate".

monster

Speaking at a press conference after O'Brien was taken back to jail, Ms Doyle said she could now "feel a sense of closure at last".

"This morning we locked up a monster, and that's what he was," she said.

"He took what he wanted from me. He used me, he degraded me, he ignored my tears. He ignored my pain, he ignored my discomfort and he satisfied himself.

"I always have held back going into the gory details in respect of my children. That was the only reason why, because I don't want them to have to listen to what was done to their mammy.

"I'm also happy to announce that my story is going to be produced and made into a film.

"I want it used as a platform. I want it to change people's attitudes on child rape and abuse. I want it to stop the silence and the underlying acceptance that has been going on in this country.

"I want to point out the battle that a victim has to go through to have their voice heard - the family's alienation, the family's acceptance and the big secret that went on behind closed doors."

Ms Doyle said she also hopes that the film, So Many Tears, will help realise her hope of starting a charity called the Fiona Doyle Foundation.

"It's an idea that has been in my mind the last couple of years," she said. "I hope some of the profits made from the film can be used to open a house where victims can come to seek solace, to take time out, to sit and talk.

"I had an idea that a house might be bought and be managed by a management team that hopefully the Rape Crisis Centre can be involved in.

"I hope we can offer support, counselling, legal advice and just be a little safe haven where somebody can come and spend the weekend and maybe have a bit of reiki or a massage or whatever to wind themselves down and handle their stress, and to take time out to write their victim impact statement and handle the fallout."

During O'Brien's trial, Ms Doyle said she believed her mother knew about the abuse.

She said yesterday that she had written to the Garda Commissioner seeking to have this investigated.

The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre can be contacted on 1800 77 88 88.

cfeehan@herald.ie


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