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Locked up Man who had over 400 child sex abuse images jailed for one year

Darren Casey (44) was caught with the images and five videos on his mobile phone after gardaí searched the home he shares with his partner and stepchildren in November 2020.

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Darren Casey

Darren Casey

Darren Casey

A man who was found in possession of 400 child sexual abuse images has been jailed for one year.

Darren Casey (44) was caught with the images and five videos on his mobile phone after gardaí searched the home he shared with his partner in November 2020.

Casey, with an address in Skerries, Co Dublin, pleaded guilty to one count of possessing the material on dates between August 1 and September 1, 2020.

He has 13 previous convictions including a public order offence and road traffic offences.

Sentencing Casey at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Martin Nolan said the possession of child pornography is a serious matter. “It is not a victimless crime,” he said.

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Darren Casey pictured at the Criminal courts of Justice (CCJ) on Parkgate Street in Dublin

Darren Casey pictured at the Criminal courts of Justice (CCJ) on Parkgate Street in Dublin

Darren Casey pictured at the Criminal courts of Justice (CCJ) on Parkgate Street in Dublin

He noted a number of mitigating factors, including the fact Casey pleaded guilty and cooperated with gardaí and noted he is at a low risk of reoffending.

The judge handed down a sentence of three years but suspended the final two years on a number of conditions.

At a sentence hearing this week, Detective Garda Gemma Macken told Aoife McNickle BL, prosecuting, that gardaí were alerted to child abuse material from a particular IP address. This address was traced to Casey's home address and his house was searched by gardaí.

Four mobile phones were seized and 400 images and five videos were found on Casey's phone. 70 of these images were found to be 'child explicit' – meaning a child was involved in or witnessing sexual activity, the court heard.

A further 100 of the images involved child exposure while the remainder fell into lesser categories.

Casey was arrested in March 2021. He told gardaí that he ended up on the dark web while browsing the internet for information on a head injury, having suffered one himself.

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He received the images and videos from someone on a messaging app, but gardaí were unable to find out who that person was.

Cathal McGreal BL, defending, said his client deleted the images afterwards and did not send them on or distribute them elsewhere. He said the revelations his client had been viewing such material “set the cat among the pigeons” at home.

Mr McGreal said Casey is now aware of the effects of his offending and has shown “insight and empathy” not just for “the devastation to his family” but for the children in the child abuse material.

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