Notorious paedo Francis Mitchell driven from home by large crowd in Co Tyrone

Notorious paedo Francis Mitchell driven from home by large crowd in Co Tyrone

Johnny BrewSunday World Video Team

This is the moment a paedophile clutching a cross was escorted from his home in Omagh to cheers from residents who have campaigned to have him put out. Francis Mitchell was taken away from his Dunbreen Close home in the Strathroy estate on Friday in a police car. The 79-year-old has a notorious reputation and in 2017 he was jailed for three years after he was convicted of 11 counts of indecent assault and two gross indecency offences involving five boys. The offences were committed between 1986 and 2007 – however there was intense anger in the community after he spent just six weeks in custody due to ill-health. He is subject to an indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO), such was the seriousness of his crimes. His home was attacked when he returned after getting out of jail but having remained in the area he appeared to have weathered the storm. However, he appeared back in court in July charged with kidnapping a four-year-old child and exposing himself to the same child. Those charges were withdrawn last week and it’s this that appears to have tipped the community over the edge. On Friday a large crowd gathered outside his home and demanded he leave. Mitchell had lived in the area for more than 30 years. An activist within Sinn Féin, he regularly campaigned for the party and sold Easter lilies for the cause every year. There was some anger that for years before he was finally convicted Mitchell was protected by some in the republican movement who initially refused to believe he was guilty of the allegations he was later convicted of. A video of the ‘removal’ has been widely shared on social media and shows the pervert being escorted out of his property by two police officers. Residents can be heard shouting “Get out you dirty paedophile bastard” and “the children deserved better”, to loud cheers. Holding a large wooden cross and what appears to be a safe, he walks past the cheering crowd who continue to abuse him while some in the crowd urge nobody to assault him. In 2017, just days after he returned to the area, the Sunday World confronted Mitchell and asked him if he intended to stay in the area. The snivelling sex beast told us at the time: “I’m sorry for all the hurt I’ve caused to my victims and to their families.” When asked if he regarded himself as a danger to society, Mitchell said: “No, I’m not. I’m trying to move on with my life. “I got out of jail three weeks ago. I’m keeping myself busy doing different things and I don’t talk to anyone, not even the neighbours.” He also confirmed that he was attending a church in the area. “I’m still going to the church around the corner every Sunday.” Mitchell also said that his house came under attack at the time. A wooden panel covered one of the windows of his front room where it had been smashed in. The same panel appears to have been smashed again recently. He said back in 2017: “A couple of boys came around last week and put the window in during the night. It’s probably because I’m back living here.” Asked if he had any intention of leaving the area because of the intimidation, he said: “I don’t know yet.” Mitchell’s offences go back to the mid-80s when he sexually abused one victim, followed by another between May and October 1987. Between 1987 and 1988 he abused a third victim and a fourth between 2000 and 2002. His fifth victim was abused between November 2004 and December 2007. Speaking after Mitchell’s sentencing, one of his victims told the Tyrone Herald: “I was vulnerable. I shouldn’t have went into his house. He had control of me. He was 27 years older than me. “It has ruined my life and that of my family. You try to block it out but it paralyses you. I got into self-harm and suicide attempts and have been hospitalised many times because of that pain. “He is a sex offender which we always knew. The most important thing is he has admitted these acts. “He had Nintendos and Playstations and a dartboard to lure them. It was like a youth club. There was also drink and drugs. “It takes a lot of courage to come forward and this shows there is light at the end of the tunnel.”

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