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'big and fat' Groper taunted victim over weight after being challenged for grabbing her bottom

Dad-of-four Broughan pleaded guilty to sexual assault

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Anthony Broughan

Anthony Broughan

Anthony Broughan

A GROPER taunted his victim over her weight when she turned around and challenged him for grabbing her bottom in a convenience store.

Anthony Broughan (40) sexually assaulted the woman as she stood in front of him in the shop, then said when confronted: “Why would I touch you? You’re big and fat.”

A judge said he probably deserved jail but adjourned the case for a probation report, telling Broughan to apologise “face to face” to the victim if she wants this.

Broughan, a father-of-four with an address at Belmont Hall, Gardiner Street, Dublin pleaded guilty to sexual assault and threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour.

Garda Sergeant Maire McDevitt told Dublin District Court gardai were notified of a panic alarm at the shop in the north city centre on December 21, 2019.

The victim pointed out the accused and said he had grabbed her right buttock from behind as she was standing in the shop.

When she confronted him about what happened, Broughan became verbally aggressive and abusive, saying: “why would I touch you? You’re big and fat.”

CCTV had captured the incident in its entirety, and gardai saw that the assault happened as the victim had said. The accused was arrested.

Broughan had previous public order convictions.

He had worked as a printer for 16 years but was out of work in recent times because of the pandemic, defence solicitor John Quinn said.

Broughan was extremely embarrassed about the incident, his behaviour had been “awful” and he apologised profusely to the victim.

He had drink taken at the time but he accepted that it did not excuse his actions, Mr Quinn said.

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The judge remarked that there was no drunkenness charge and alcohol was not referred to in the summary of evidence.

The judge said the accused probably deserved a prison sentence.

This had never happened before, it was out of character and Broughan was “thoroughly ashamed of his actions,” Mr Quinn said, asking the judge not to jail Broughan.

The judge ordered a pre-sentence probation report “to establish as far as possible that there’s nothing else going on.”

He also said there should be compensation.

“In this case, I’m not going to mention a figure,” he told Mr Quinn. “It will be the measure of your client what he actually comes up with.”

He said he wanted a full apology to the victim, and “it should really be conveyed face to face” if she wanted that.

“I did apologise,” the accused said.

He was remanded on continuing bail to next January.

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