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Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre manager says sentencing guidelines need to be reviewed

Nov 29, 2022 13:11 By radiokerrynews
Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre manager says sentencing guidelines need to be reviewed Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre manager says sentencing guidelines need to be reviewed
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The manager of the Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre says sentencing guidelines need to be reviewed and overhauled.

Vera O’Leary was speaking following the sentencing of 35-year-old Timmy Duggan, of Mountain Lodge, Annagh, Tralee.

He was sentenced to eight years in prison with the final year suspended after pleading guilty to 22 crimes, including sexual exploitation of children, and sexual abuse of children, relating to offences between 2015 and 2021.

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Manager of the Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre, Vera O'Leary says a very negative message goes out when the public perceive a sentence to be lenient.

She’s aware judges are bound by legislation but says that means very little to the public, who have a lack of understanding of sentencing guidelines.

She says the public doesn’t understand why someone convicted of burglary could receive the same sentence as a sex offender.

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Judges must take into account any plea or admissions as well as previous sentences when deciding a sentence.

Vera O’Leary also says a framework needs to be put in place when sexual offenders are released from prison to instil confidence in the public:

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Some of the offences involved in Timmy Duggan’s case involved paying mothers for indecent images of their children, or paying for physical access to their children for the purposes of sexual gratification.

One of the mothers involved, a co-accused in the case, was sentenced to three years in prison with the final 18 months suspended.

Manager of the Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre, Vera O'Leary says women giving men access to their children isn’t something they come across often:

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If you’re affected by this issue, you can contact Kerry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre on freephone 1800 633 333.

 

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