A paedophile who sexually abused three young girls — including one who has special needs — has been jailed for seven and a half years and ordered to sign the police sex offenders register for the rest of his life.
However, speaking outside Antrim Crown Court after 56-year-old Albert John McVeigh was jailed, the angry mothers of two of his young victims said the jail term was not long enough.
The mother of the girl who suffered the worst of the abuse said that “no amount of time is going to take away the pain that he has caused to this family”.
The mother whose daughter has special needs due to a brain condition said she was “completely and utterly disappointed” with the sentence.
Earlier the court heard how McVeigh, from Moyadam Close in Parkgate, may not have long to live after he went through surgery six weeks ago to remove a cancerous tumour from a kidney, leaving him with a 50/50 chance of survival beyond five years.
Prosecuting lawyer Kate McKay said all three girls had been aged between six and eight when McVeigh abused them, adding that although two were touched once each, the other girl was abused for two and a half years.
She said one child had told her parents McVeigh touched her “loads and loads of times” and how he showed her “dirty TV programmes” referring to pornographic films.
Mrs McKay said it was those revelations which led officers to speak to the second victim who was eight at the time. The investigations then led police to the third girl who has special needs which were described as “immediately obvious”.
McVeigh was arrested and charged.
He later pleaded guilty to eight charges relating to gross indecency and ten of indecent assault, all on dates between May 2006 and December 2008.
Defence lawyer Peter Irvine told the court that McVeigh had given him clear instructions to say sorry for what he had done.
The judge David Smyth QC ordered that instead of receiving remission, McVeigh is to be released on licence and as part of that licence, conditions can be set by the Secretary of State which would force him to complete any sex offenders programme designed to lessen any risk he may pose to children.