Man sentenced to 10 years for sexual assault on three girls


A man has been jailed for 10 years by the Central Criminal Court for orally raping three young girls.

Stephen Crowley (27), a baker of Lynn Heights, Mullingar, had earlier told the court: "I want to pay for what I have done". He pleaded guilty to 10 sample counts of oral rape and sexual assault on the girls when they were aged eight to 10 on dates from 1993 to 1995.

He apologised to his victims from the witness box and said he accepted that words alone could never compensate them for the effects of his actions.

Mr Justice Carney, who imposed concurrent sentences of 10 years on two oral rape charges, and of four years on sexual assault counts, said he accepted that Crowley's remorse was genuine but noted there had been a threat to kill one of the victims.

The victims told the judge they were still badly affected by the sexual assaults.

Mr Justice Carney said the objective of the court in passing sentence was that every sentence passed should be consistent with every other sentence. The court had to take into consideration the gravity of the offence, the facts of the case, the effect on the victims and the circumstances of the convicted person.He suspended the final 18 months of the sentence because Crowley had not occupied a trial date and so had left a date free "for the trial of another violent person".

Det Garda Michael Burke told Mr John Shortt, prosecuting, that Crowley admitted the offences when he arrested him in June 1999. He said he would give money to the girls and warned them not to tell anyone what was happening.