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'I keep to myself more than in the past': Teenagers attacked with acid discuss impact on their lives

One of the victim’s mother said the incident had changed her son.

Tega Agberhiere on Claire Byrne Live last night.
Tega Agberhiere on Claire Byrne Live last night.
Image: RTÉ

TWO TEENAGERS WHO were injured in an acid attack in Waterford have spoken out about their injuries and recovery. 

Pádraig Sullivan and Tega Agberhiere both appeared on RTÉ One’s Claire Byrne Live programme last night. 

They were two of three teenagers attacked with a chemical in May 2019. 

“They were tooled with weapons and they attacked us. When we were trying to get away they threw acid on us and we all – me and Tega – were in hospital within an hour of it happening,” Pádraig said. 

On the programme, he showed where on his thigh and his calf he had to get a skin graft. 

He said that he “has to wait for the scars to go on my skin” before he can playing hurling again. 

Tega, who was 16 at the time of the attack and is a promising footballer, had the acid thrown on his face. Initially, there were fears that he might not be able to see again, but he is now recovering. 

“In my right eye, the vision is worse than it was before,” he said. ”I have a little scar near the middle of my eye, but it’s getting better.”

“I kind of keep to myself more than I would in the past. I stay at home more and don’t go out as much and things like that,” he told the programme. 

Christy Agberhiere, Tega’s mother, said that her son “had changed” following the attack. 

In December, the families were informed by gardaí that two of the alleged attackers would not be charged and instead they received juvenile cautions. Gardaí believe more than two people were involved in the attack. 

Agberhiere said that was she “disappointed” at the decision.

“It’s a pain in my heart,” she said. “I don’t even know the words to use. I can’t even get my head around it.”

A statement from the gardaí, read out on the programme, said: “The case remains the subject of an ongoing Garda investigation for which a file has been prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.”

“We can confirm that suspects in the case include both adults and young people. We will not be commenting further at this time.”

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