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Woman who put sex ads on net escapes jail

A woman has been given a suspended sentence for posting sex ads on a classifieds website on behalf of two unwitting people.

Aishling Madden (34) was convicted earlier this month following trial. She had initially admitted posting the messages to the Gumtree website but then claimed she had brought a group of people back from a night out and that they had done it.

Madden, of Monastery Drive, Clondalkin, pleaded not guilty to four counts of defamation against David Henry and Louise Vivash at her home between June 17 and 20, 2006. She also denied a further two counts of publishing material which was grossly offensive, indecent or obscene.

The court heard that Madden was "a very fragile person." Defence counsel Sean Gillane said she suffered from mental health issues and had to be monitored by her parents who she continues to live with.

Judge Patrick McCartan sentenced her to 12 months on each count but suspended it in full for three years on condition she complies with the instructions of her medical team. Sergeant Liam Coogan who was attached to the Computer Crime Investigation Unit told Sean Guerin, prosecuting, that Madden said in interview that she was working as a temporary receptionist for Accenture in May 2006.

She said she came across Ms Vivash's CV on the work computer and decided to email it to herself as she thought it was a good example of a CV.

Sgt Coogan said Ms Vivash's CV appeared alongside the sexual comments and her contact details on the Gumtree website. He said the CV was also found on a hard drive seized from Madden.


Madden told gardai she had met Mr Henry once when he working for the Office Angels recruitment company. Sgt Coogan said an email between Mr Henry and Madden was also found on her hard drive.

She initially told gardai she did not know who put the comments concerning Ms Vivace and Mr Henry on the website. She said it was not her and could not have been anyone else. In a second interview she told gardai three males and one female were in her house on the night the posts were made and had access to her computer. She said they did this as a practical joke.

She said one of the group was also responsible for the comments about Mr Henry. She told gardai she had since forgotten their names and only knew them through meeting them a few times in the city centre.

Mark Gibson, who worked with Gumtree at the time gave evidence of the two messages.

He said one was titled "Horny Irish male takes all" and gave Mr Henry's phone number and work email. It said he was a "keen operator" who offered various sex acts and like to be called "captain caveman."

The other message was titled "Diva with a heart of gold" and gave the phone number and email of Ms Vivash. It offered sexual services.

Mr Gillane said Madden now accepted the verdict of the jury and was sorry for her actions.

"I am very relieved to hear she accepts the verdict of the jury," Judge McCartan said.

"Two innocent people in this case were very meanly targeted and offended for little or no reason."