A Clare man has gone on trial accused of raping and sexually abusing a teenage boy who he used to give money to.
The 70- year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has pleaded not guilty to three counts of anal rape and two counts of sexual assault of the youth at various locations in the county between 1999 and 2000.
The jury at the Central Criminal Court in Dublin on Monday heard the man admitted to gardaí that he touched the then 14 year old’s penis on one occasion but claimed that nothing else happened. He told gardaí during interview that he used to give the boy money for food because he felt sorry for him.
Opening the trial, prosecuting counsel, Dominic McGinn, SC, said that the accused allegedly took the boy for drives in his car to places where the abuse took place.
He said the man and boy worked out a “signal system”. If the accused was driving by and unable to stop he would hold up one finger and throw a matchbox containing money out the window. If he could stop he would hold up two fingers and pull in further up the road.
Counsel said that it is alleged that the sexual abuse took place in the accused’s car and in his home. He said that after the third alleged anal rape the boy made it clear to the man that he didn’t like it and wanted it to stop.
Counsel said there was some contact between them after this but nothing of a sexual nature. He said the accused continued to give the boy money sometimes.
In 2011 the alleged victim contacted gardaí and an investigation began. The accused was interviewed and said that he knew the boy from around the area.
He said he used to give him money for food because he felt sorry for him and that he would sometimes take him on drives in his car.
He said on one occasion the boy stayed the night and they touched each other’s penises but that this was the extent of the sexual contact and that, apart from that, their relationship was “completely above board.”
Counsel said the accused also told gardaí that on one occasion he found the boy and another male in his back garden. He claimed the boy said they wanted to come in for “three in a bed sex” but that the man refused.
The trial continues before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury.
By Conor Gallagher