Man (54) jailed for defiling three girls and child porn possession

Judge sentenced David Masterson to 7½ years and says misbehaviour ‘gross in this case’

A separated man who defiled  three underage girls a year after he was caught with child pornography has been jailed for seven and a half years. File photograph: Matt Kavanagh/The Irish Times.

A separated man who defiled three underage girls a year after he was caught with child pornography has been jailed for seven and a half years. File photograph: Matt Kavanagh/The Irish Times.

 

A separated man who defiled three underage girls, a year after he was caught with child pornography, has been jailed for 7½ years.

David Masterson (54), who is originally from the Tallaght area in Dublin but has been on remand in custody since September 2017, met the girls through a teenage boy who had connected with them on social media.

Det Garda Colin McKiernan agreed with Paul Carroll SC, defending, that the teenage boy had gone online “looking for sexual experiences for payment and roped these girls into this situation”.

One of these girls, who was 16 at the time, started seeing Masterson in February 2016 and continued seeing him until December of that year. The detective confirmed that there were multiple sexual encounters between Masterson and this girl during that time.

Masterson pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to three charges of defilement on dates between February 2016 and December 2016 and charges of possession and distribution of child pornography on November 14th, 2015. He has one previous conviction for a road traffic offence.

Sentencing him on Friday Judge Martin Nolan said it was an “understatement” to say Masterson’s behaviour was wrong .

“He had sex with two individuals under 17 on one occasion and he had multiple sexual encounters with a girl he lived with,” the judge said.

‘Gross’

The judge refused to suspend any portion of the sentence, saying: “The misbehaviour has been gross in this case”. He backdated the sentence to when Masterson went into custody.

Det Garda McKiernan told Garrett McCormack BL, prosecuting, that gardaí­ were called to “an incident” during a New Year’s Eve party in 2016, which Masterson and some of the victims were attending.

He said the girls later gave statements and confirmed that Masterson had sex with one of them while she was 16 and had engaged in oral sex with another girl when she was 15.

The other girl confirmed that she and Masterson were in having ongoing sexual encounters before she turned 17.

Det Garda McKiernan confirmed that Masterson’s rented home was searched in November 2015 following the receipt of confidential information and a laptop was seized. The court heard that 5,121 images were discovered on the computer, 3,846 of which showed adult men sexually abusing pre-teen children.

Screaming

Det Garda McKiernan said 196 videos were also found, 176 of which showed adult men sexually abusing pre-teen boys and girls.

Det Garda McKiernan agreed with Mr Carroll that previous to the search of his home, Masterson was not on the Garda radar and had lived “a fairly normal life” having worked for a semi-state body for 20 years and been married for 26 years.

In relation to the child pornography, Masterson told gardaí­ that he was lonely following the breakdown of his marriage.

Det Garda McKiernan agreed that “things had started going off the rails” for Masterson. Counsel said his client was “finished in terms of his family, finished in terms of his friends and finished in terms of his work”.

“He is a man who literally went off the rails at a late stage in his life ,” Mr Carroll submitted.