Late charity chief allegedly assaulted men for whom he secured housing, report says

ICCH provided accommodation to two allegedly abused by Anthony Flynn, report says

The former chief executive of Inner City Helping Homeless, Anthony Flynn, died in tragic circumstances last month. Photograph: Alan Betson

The former chief executive of Inner City Helping Homeless, Anthony Flynn, died in tragic circumstances last month. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

The former chief executive of Inner City Helping Homeless (ICHH) is alleged to have sexually assaulted men for whom he had had secured accommodation through the homeless charity, according to an internal report.

Anthony Flynn, who died in tragic circumstances last month, had been under investigation by gardaí in relation to two alleged sexual assaults. In recent weeks others have claimed they had also been sexually assaulted.

David Hall, former chair of the charity’s board, prepared a 12-page report into ICHH’s handling of the controversy. The report, seen by The Irish Times, was sent to the charity on Thursday evening.

Two of the men allegedly sexually assaulted by Mr Flynn had previously been “accommodated by the CEO” in temporary rental housing provided by the charity, the report states.

Mr Flynn was a founder of the charity, which ran outreach programmes working with homeless people in Dublin’s north inner city. He was also an Independent councillor on Dublin City Council.

‘Serious sexual assault’

The report outlined the two initial allegations being investigated by gardaí were of “serious sexual assault” in May this year, one of which involved an “extremely vulnerable” man in his 20s. It was alleged the man was sexually assaulted after he was brought to Mr Flynn’s home at night by taxi.

The report states the man presented to a hospital emergency department the following day, and transferred to a sexual assault unit.

Mr Hall said a review of the charity’s files confirmed the individual was a client of ICHH, who had previously been housed “at the CEO’s request” in a rental apartment.

The second sexual assault allegation related to an incident 13 days later, involving another man, who was brought to the former chief executive’s home by taxi.

The report states that after the allegations were reported to gardaí, Mr Flynn’s house was searched and a number of his electronic devices were seized. Gardaí believed the ICHH taxi account was used to bring one of the men to Mr Flynn’s home, it adds.

A third alleged victim reported to the charity on August 26th that he had been sexually assaulted by Mr Flynn, though a date for the alleged attack is not given.

The man, who was homeless, had been “accommodated by the CEO in accommodation provided by ICHH,” the report states.

“While being accommodated by ICHH the CEO sent texts asking this person for sex. It was alleged the CEO sexually assaulted this person,” the report states. It was also alleged Mr Flynn “transferred a specific amount of money to this person to buy cocaine,” it said.

A fourth alleged sexual assault victim came forward in early September. Mr Hall said the man, who had lost his job earlier in the year and was facing eviction, “turned to the CEO of ICHH for help”.

The man alleged he was later sexually assaulted by Mr Flynn after being brought to his home by taxi. The report noted the individual’s address matched one of the addresses listed in a journey on the charity’s taxi account.

Investigation

The report outlines Mr Flynn did not disclose he was under investigation for alleged sexual assault to the charity’s board.

In early August the charity received an email from an individual, stating gardaí were investigating a member of staff over alleged sexual assault. The report said Mr Flynn “denied any knowledge of any such investigation into any member of ICHH staff”.

Following the email Mr Hall contacted gardaí, who informed him of the ongoing investigation into Mr Flynn, at which point he was suspended from the charity. A week later Mr Flynn was found dead in his home.

Mr Hall said after Mr Flynn’s death gardaí informed him a number of threats had been made against him, and advised him to stay away from the charity’s office and the north inner city. He later resigned from the charity’s board.

Members of the charity, including its board, are to discuss Mr Hall’s report in the coming days. Barrister Remy Farrell SC has also been appointed to conduct a review into the controversy.