Man raped and sexually assaulted niece
A Cork man who raped and sexually assaulted his young niece has been jailed for four years at the Central Criminal Court.
Last month the 55-year-old man, who cannot be named to protect the victims' anonymity, was found guilty of two counts of rape and one count of indecent assault of the girl, at the accused man's home between 1977 and 1985. He had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The victim, a daughter of the accused's older sister, was aged between eight and thirteen years of age at the time of the offences.
Ms Justice Isobel Kennedy sentenced the man to ten years in prison with six years suspended for the two rape offences and six years in prison with four years suspended for the indecent assault offence. All sentences are to run concurrently.
The man, who has no previous convictions, was declared a sex offender.
The judge said the complainant had read her victim impact report with "great dignity."
The court heard that the accused had a number of medical issues and had had a leg amputated.
Ms Justice Kennedy said she had carefully considered the man's medical conditions and how a custodial sentence "would prove difficult for him."
However, she said having taken into consideration all the evidence, a custodial sentence was necessary.
The judge said that the aggravating factors included the abuse of trust, threats made to the child as she was at the time and its effect on the injured party.
The mitigating factors included that the man suffered from ill health and how a custodial sentence would be more difficult for him, as well as the fact that he was aged between 16 and 21 years of age at the time of the offences.