“ISPCC shares the shock and distress felt by so many on hearing the horrifying details of rape and abuse carried out by a man and a woman on her young children following their sentencing at the Central Criminal Court today.
Fiona Jennings, ISPCC, Head of Policy and Public Affairs said: “Parents and those in a parenting role are expected to protect their children and keep them safe, yet in this case it is clear from the sentences handed down that these children did not experience such protection.
“We join with Mr Justice David Keane in paying tribute to the young children at the centre of the case who showed such bravery in recounting the horrendous abuse they were subjected to at such a young age.”
ISPCC welcomes the lengthy sentences handed down to both perpetrators of this shocking abuse and strongly condemns the heinous crimes carried out against these young children. Any child who has been sexually abused must be offered and receive support in a timely manner.
The specialist interviewers must also be commended for their diligence in gathering such harrowing testimony to secure such a substantial sentence. However, it is not acceptable that it took eight years to get to trial and for the children to have to wait such a lengthy period to access justice.
ISPCC reiterates its call for the Government to commit with haste to a national strategy for child sexual abuse as recommended by the Report of the Garda Síochána Inspectorate, Responding to Child Sexual Abuse, 2017.
It is generally accepted that the number of cases of abuse in this country are grossly under-reported and the ISPCC strongly encourages anyone who has concerns about a child to help them disclose these horrific crimes to the authorities.
Such crimes can be reported by contacting An Garda Síochána’s Child Sexual Abuse Reporting Phone Line, which is a dedicated phone line for the reporting of child sexual abuse, on 1800 555 222.
Children must always be protected, and we must do everything we can to ensure that we live in a society that puts children and their needs and rights at the heart of all we do.