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Jury in Munster child abuse trial will continue deliberations tomorrow

The jury has been deliberating since Thursday morning.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

THE JURY IN a child abuse trial has been sent home for the day and will resume deliberations tomorrow.

Mr Justice Paul McDermott sent the jury home just after lunch-time today as one of the jurors had an appointment to attend.

The jury in the trial, which has entered its tenth week, has been deliberating since Thursday morning. They have been told there is no restriction on time and to return their verdicts based on the evidence before them.

The five family members, who cannot be named for legal reasons, are accused of abusing three children between 2014 and 2016.

The accused are the parents, aunt and uncles of the children. They range in ages from 27 to 56 and live in various locations in Munster.

The parents are also accused of neglecting five of their children. All of the accused have denied the charges against them.

Reporting restrictions are in place to protect the welfare and identities of the children.

The 56-year-old father has pleaded not guilty to 34 counts including rape, anal rape, oral rape, sexual assault, sexual exploitation and wilfully neglecting a child at locations in Munster on unknown dates between 18 August, 2014 and 28 April, 2016. An additional three counts against him were withdrawn during the trial.

The 34-year-old mother has pleaded not guilty to 25 counts including sexual assault, sexual exploitation and wilfully neglecting a child at locations in Munster on unknown dates between 18 August, 2014 and 28 April, 2016.

The mother and father have also pleaded not guilty to wilfully neglecting another two of their children at a location in Munster on unknown dates between 18 August, 2014 and 28 April, 2016.

A 35-year-old woman – the children’s aunt – has pleaded not guilty to three counts, including sexually assaulting the girl and sexually assaulting one of the boys at locations in Munster on unknown dates between 18 August, 2014 and 28 April, 2016.

Her 49-year-old husband has pleaded not guilty to 10 counts including rape, anal rape, oral rape, sexual assault and sexual exploitation at locations in Munster on unknown dates between 18 August, 2014 and 28 April, 2016.. Two additional counts were withdrawn during the trial.

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A 27-year-old man – the children’s uncle – has pleaded not (NOT) guilty to 10 counts including rape, oral rape, anal rape, sexual assault and sexual exploitation at locations in Munster on unknown dates between August 18, 2014 and April 28, 2016.

A count of alleged sexual exploitation by him of the eldest boy was withdrawn by order of the trial judge.

The case against two other women – the children’s uncle’s 32-year-old partner and their 57-year-old grandmother – was withdrawn earlier in the trial by direction of the judge.

Comments are closed due to ongoing legal proceedings.

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Isabel Hayes

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