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Accused of sexually exploiting teenage girl

A 37-year-old man appeared in Ennis District Court this week charged with the sexual exploitation of a child in County Clare.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is charged with the sexual exploitation of a 16-year-old girl on a date between September 7, 2014 and September 27, 2014.

The charge states that the accused communicated with the child with the intention of carrying out an act that would constitute the sexual exploitation of the child contrary to Section 3 of the Child Trafficking Act 1998.

During the hearing on Wednesday, Inspector Tom Kennedy informed Judge Patrick Durcan that the Director of Public Prosecutions had directed that the case could be dealt with by summary disposal in the district court.

Inspector Kennedy informed Judge Durcan that the contact that was made between the accused and the injured party consisted of about 40 to 50 text messages and he added that about half of the text messages were of an “explicit nature”.

Defence solicitor Jim MacGuill said other acquaintances of the accused have been before the court on related charges, while Inspector Kennedy said an acquaintance of the accused who had introduced the man to the young girl is facing “more serious charges”.

Judge Durcan declined jurisdiction in the case and remanded the accused on bail to appear before Ennis Circuit Court on February 17 for the service of the Book of Evidence.

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