Boy alleging rape by father says also abused in foster care

Child says he tried to run away from his first foster home because he missed his parents

A 12-year-old boy has  spent five days giving evidence via video-link about alleged abuse by his parents in their Waterford home. File photograph: Getty Images

A 12-year-old boy has spent five days giving evidence via video-link about alleged abuse by his parents in their Waterford home. File photograph: Getty Images

 

A boy who was removed from the family home after allegedly being raped by his father and forced to have sex with his mother was further sexually abused while in foster care, a trial has heard.

The now 12-year-old has so far spent five days giving evidence via video-link about alleged abuse by his parents in their Waterford home.

He has alleged his father raped him, sexually abused him with a hot poker and forced him to have sex with his mother over the course of several years from when he was about six years old.

The father is alleged to have filmed some of these incidents and shown them to others.

He is further alleged to have held a gun to the child’s head and to have left him locked in a box.

His parents face a total of 82 charges of abuse between 2007 and 2011 in Waterford.

The father and mother have pleaded not guilty at the Central Criminal Court to 16 counts each of sexual exploitation and one charge each of child cruelty.

The mother has also denied 16 counts of sexual assault, while the father denies 16 counts of anal rape and 16 counts of sexual assault with a poker.

The boy was taken into care when he was eight after he made allegations of physical abuse by his father.

He told the jury the first foster family he was placed with were nearly as bad as his parents, except there was no hitting or rape.

He said the foster parents and other children shouted all the time.

“It was just like my parents’ home,” he said. “It was mostly the same except for the hitting and everything. All the shouting and stuff except for the raping and all that.”

He said his foster parents “were slightly better than my parents but were still horrible”.

The child agreed with his father’s defence counsel, Colman Cody SC, that he tried to run away from his first foster home because he missed his parents. He said he did not like these foster parents and still does not.

He agreed with Mr Cody that he occasionally stayed with a relative of his foster mother, where he said he was sexually abused by another child.

He said this child, who he thought was aged about 13, “liked me in a different way, I think he wanted to be gay”.

Asked to elaborate by Mr Cody, the child said he could not remember what happened because he “just sort of blocked it out”.

He went on to agree he had made a statement to gardaí­ that this older boy “wanted to have sex with me”.

The witness said the boy climbed into his bed and pulled down both their pyjama bottoms before rubbing his genitals against him. He said this happened several times.

“He didn’t hurt me but I didn’t like it,” the child told gardaí. “I tried to push him off but he was too strong.”

Mr Cody asked the boy about an allegation that his father owned “50 guns and 50 bullets”, and had held a gun to his head. The boy said the guns were kept in a shed and included “a machine gun”.

He said that on the night before he was taken into care, his father “got rid” of all his guns by selling them or giving them away.

Counsel put it to the child that the allegations he made about his father “did not happen”.

The boy replied that “whoever said that is a liar” and insisted they did happen.

The trial continues with the boy’s evidence before Mr Justice Robert Eagar and a jury.