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Dublin: 15 °C Friday 14 August, 2020

Priest apologises to victim for abuse

Paul McGennis has said he’s sorry for the ‘stress and torture’ he caused. He began abusing his victim in the eighties, when she was 10 years old.

Image: [File Photo] Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

A PRIEST WHO subjected his former parishioner to abuse from the age of ten in the eighties has apologised to her today.

Paul McGennis, who is now 79, pleaded guilty to eight sample counts of sexual abuse at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today, reports RTÉ. His name had been withheld in the Murphy Reports, according to 98fm, but the court allowed him to be identified.

He had told the victim that she would be thrown out of the church if she told anyone.

The abuse took place in the priest’s house in a parish in Dublin City Centre, and then continued when he moved to another Dublin parish. The victim said in a victim impact statement her innocence, childhood and future was stolen. She reported the abuse to Gardaí following a suicide attempt.

McGennis, who is now retired, told the victim and her family that he was sorry for the “stress and torture” he had put them through.

The former priest will be sentence next month. RTÉ reports that his lawyers say he is at a low risk of reoffending, and that his remorse is genuine.

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In her impact statement today the victim said:

Whatever sentence is imposed on that man, he should realise that he has imposed a sentence on me that I will continue to serve until the day I die.

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About the author:

Emer McLysaght

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