DPP v M (W)
1995 WJSC-CCC 559
CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT
Ruling delivered the 17th day of February, 1995 by Carney J.
In view of the laws as placed and maintained on the Statute Book by the legislature, I feel it necessary to bring a consequence of these laws to the attention of the Oireachtas and the Executive.
The ruling of this Court delivered on the 1st day of February, 1995, will have come as no surprise to the Executive as it amounted essentially to an acceptance of the submissions made to the Court by Counsel on behalf of both the Attorney General and the Director of Public Prosecutions. See the transcript of legal argument herein on the 11th November, 1994.
The Court has received a letter from Solicitors for the Eastern Health Board which must, of necessity, be edited by me in referring to it. It recites that the Eastern Health Board is charged with the responsibility for the protection of children within its catchment area. It continues:
"We have an interest in this incest case as this family have been known to the Eastern Health Board for a number of years and some of the children of the family may have on occasion been in the care of the Eastern Health Board on either a voluntary basis or by Court Order."
It came to our attention some years ago that Mr. ??? had left the jurisdiction while on bail in relation to charges of incest and he took with him his son, ???. Mr. ???'s wife and other children remained in this jurisdiction.
Our clients were involved in ???'s disclosures of sexual abuse at the hands of her father and were aware that efforts were being made to extradite Mr. ???. Our clients were concerned that Mr. ??? had full custody of the other child when this type of allegation had been made against him and our clients had sought advice from us in relation to steps we could take to protect any child who would be in his custody if we were in a position to establish his whereabouts.
When Mr. ??? was extradited to this country, he agreed to place ??? in the voluntary care of the Eastern Health Board and Mrs. ??? was also in agreement with this suggestion. Our advice to our clients in relation to the protection of any child in Mr. ???'s custody was that wardship proceedings would need to be initiated based on reports from the Sexual Assault Treatment Unit in the Rotunda and on the disclosures by ??? in relation to the abuse of her by her father. We would also produce general information in relation to child sexual abuse and the fact that it is a compulsive disorder which will continue even if a particular child is removed from the scene. It is our clients” belief that if a person has abused one child then other children are at risk of abuse from that person.
In those circumstances you will understand...
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