'disturbing' | 

How paedo who paid mothers to let him abuse their kids was a trusted member of Kerry community

The former badminton champ who organised bouncy castle parties was living the twisted double life of a child sex predator.

Timmy Duggan

Maeve McTaggartSunday World

Former badminton champion Timmy Duggan (35) was the ultimate “Jekyll and Hyde” who organised bouncy castle parties for kids while he paid to abuse others.

Previously a trusted member of the local community, the Kerry man spent many days setting up family events for charity.

The paedophile was sentenced to seven years in prison this week, alongside a woman in her 30s who sold him photos of her children.

She received €3,500 from Duggan for the “child pornography” material of her own son (6) and daughter (9) and has now been jailed for 18 months.

Duggan was a badminton star and charity organiser whose actions were, according to Judge Elva Duffy, “disturbing, depraved and obscene.”

In April, an investigation by the Sunday World revealed the horror of former friends and colleagues of Duggan who had no idea he was a predator.

The disturbed badminton champ worked in outlets of major chains in Cobh, Killarney, Drimnagh and Ballina over the past decade, but would cut contact with friends for months at a time.

Convicted sex offender Duggan organised bouncy castle parties for children.

In messages and images obtained by the Sunday World in April, Duggan advertised his events for families on social media: "Having a fun day in the car park Saturday from 12 to 4. Why not pop in there's bouncy castle games live music and dance and a petting sheep, going to be a good day out!"

When he was finally arrested by gardaí, Duggan lied to his best friend about his crimes.

He said the charge was for the statutory rape of a 16-year-old who had flirted with him at a house party in Cork.

In reality, Duggan was paying women to allow him to sexually abuse their children, tracking down the mothers on online dating websites, social media and a classified ads website.

All of the child victims and their siblings have since been taken into the care of the State. None of the women can be named in order to protect the identities of these children.

Simultaneous to his vile crimes, he was organising bouncy castle parties for kids and for a decade, went undetected even by his best friend.

"He was the front of the group," this former pal told the Sunday World in April. “Very chatty and very charming, and any night out was usually organised by him.

"He got on with everyone.

"He was very popular with girls … he wouldn't be the best looking, but he always played up the country accent in Dublin.

"He'd make everyone laugh.”

The horrified friend painted a picture of a trusted life-of-the-party character who “everyone remembers.”

However, Duggan “ghosted” the group in 2019 and refused to respond to messages ahead of an important wedding.

"I had to keep hounding him and then I got a text off him saying: 'I'm in trouble.'

Timmy Duggan would organise family events with bouncy castles

"I asked what kind of trouble,” the unknowing friend said.

"Eventually, what I got from him was that he had been at a house party in Cork and there was this 16-year-old girl at it who was flirting with him.

"He said he ended up sleeping with her and then, when she went home the next day, she told her parents and they went to the guards. So now he was up on statutory rape charges.”

That was all he knew before news of Duggan’s vile crime broke.

"We were close … I lived with him,” he said, describing Duggan as “a Jekyll and Hyde” who had a depraved dark side that he kept hidden.

The close former friend said: “Essentially, it is like he died, because I have lost a best friend regardless … I'm never going to talk to him again.”

Gardaí were first alerted to Duggan when he was working as a supermarket manager in Limerick in 2016.

Two girls, aged 10 and 11, had been receiving requests for naked photos from the man who they had met at the shop.

Their horrified dad raising the alarm and Dugan voluntarily presented himself to gardaí, handing over his phone, laptop and access to his social media accounts.

His 2019 arrest came when he was suspected of contacting women in an attempt to access their children.

Duggan said he was a “sex addict” and admitted to a number of evil crimes, including grooming the two young girls in the supermarket and receiving naked photos of children from their mothers.

Timmy Duggan

He also admitted to luring two girls into his car in October of 2019, saying he offered them cash to allow him to perform a sex act in front of them.

The paedo badminton star said that through a female sex worker, he met the mother of a seven-year-old girl who he involved in his depraved crimes.

Duggan paid the sex worker and the girl’s mother €400 each to access the girl who he received photos of and sexually assaulted.

He admitted to grooming the young girl through giving gifts of roller blades, a vanity table and make up.

When sentencing Duggan to eight years in prison with the final year suspended – backdating the sentence to October 2021 when he was taken into custody – the judge said he “persuaded [women] to betray their relationship with their children.”

Sources familiar with the case said he is likely to see release within three years, given the time he has already served, his early guilty plea and his cooperation with gardaí.

Judge Elva Duffy has barred the man from accessing computers with internet or mobile phones with cameras unless given permission from probation services or gardaí.

Any electronic devices he does have must be made available to those working with him following his release.

He and the woman have been placed on the sex offenders register for an indefinite period.

Gardaí are continuing their investigation into additional child sex offences committed throughout their probe into Duggan.

A woman alleged to have engaged with Duggan about accessing a child for sexual abuse is awaiting trial charged with alleged child sex exploitation charges.

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