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Former Church of Ireland lay worker pleads guilty to indecent assault

CourtsBy Sunday World
Former Church of Ireland lay worker pleads guilty to indecent assault

A former lay worker with the Church of Ireland accused of sexually abusing 10 boys between 1977 and 1990 has pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting one male.

Patrick O'Brien (76), with a Dublin address, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to indecently assaulting a male in a boat which was moored in a Midlands town on a date between April 1, 1984 and September 30, 1984.

Anne Rowland BL, prosecuting said that the State required O'Brien to plead to further charges before he was ultimately sentenced but were accepting this plea to allow the case to proceed.

She asked that the case be adjourned to meet a second case against O'Brien for which a book of evidence had just been served.

Judge Melanie Greally remanded O'Brien on bail and adjourned the case until April 8, next when all evidence will be heard.

Judge Cormac Dunne previously ruled that the media could identify the accused following an application by RTÉ at the District Court.

Judge Dunne said nothing must be published that would identify any of the alleged victims and noted that there was no evidence that publishing the defendant’s name would link him to the complainants.

Sonya McLean