Man sentenced to 15 years over repeated rape of child

Andrew McCarthy (35) began abusing girl when she was nine years old

A Roscommon resident who repeatedly raped a child over a five-year period has been sentenced to 15 years with three suspended.

Andrew McCarthy (35) began raping the girl in 2006 when was she nine years old after taking her to a seaside town. In a victim impact report the woman said McCarthy took her innocence and childhood from her and left her a broken person.

McCarthy of Ballymoe, Castlerea, pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to 11 counts covering the rape, oral rape and sexual assault of the child at houses in Dublin and Galway on dates between May 2006 and January 2011. The sample counts are from a total of 27 charges within that period.

Elva Duffy BL, prosecuting, told the court that the victim is happy for McCarthy to be identified in the press but wants her own identity to remain unpublished at all times.


Mr Justice Paul Carney said one aggravating factor in the case was the fact that McCarthy would ply the victim with alcohol to the point that she suffered liver damage. He also noted that McCarthy photographed and video recorded the abuse.

He suspended the final three years of a 15-year sentence on condition that McCarthy stay away from the victim and undergo 18 months of post release supervision. The judge also ordered that McCarthy be registered as a sex offender.

The abuse was discovered in March 2011 when the victim’s mother saw inappropriate messages on Facebook. In the messages McCarthy was telling the child that he loved her and would wait for her.

The court heard that McCarthy first molested the child in the summer of 2006 after taking her to a seaside amusement arcade where the court heard she had won two big teddies.

In a victim impact report the woman said McCarthy had instilled nothing but fear in her for 10 years.

She said she was too young to understand what he was doing until she went into fifth class. After that she felt disgusting all the time. She was bullied in school and her Leaving Certificate suffered because of an earlier trial during which he had pleaded not guilty.

“I don’t sleep I always feel scared and vulnerable. I never feel safe. I have contemplated suicide. I have nightmares. I felt disgusting, insecure, used. I cannot open up to anybody,” she said.

McCarthy has one previous conviction for handling stolen property.

Peter Finlay SC, defending, said his client wishes to apologise for his actions but admitted he has limited insight.

He said McCarthy was himself the victim of child sex abuse. In 2010 he made a suicide attempt and was admitted into a psychiatric unit.