Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Victimised twice: by pervert cousin and church-goers

A victim of sexual abuse has waived her right to anonymity to tell of the ordeal she was subjected to by her cousin, who holds a senior position in a north Antrim Presbyterian church.

Simone Walker (24) also told of the vicious outburst she was subjected to when church members attended the trial of her older cousin Ivor Hogg recently.

The incidents began when Miss Walker was five and her cousin was 13 and continued until she was 11 and Hogg had reached 19 or 20.

Hogg (31), from Greenville Avenue in Ballymoney, admitted three indecent assaults and received a suspended sentence earlier this month.

Miss Walker told the BBC that the age difference between them was too wide to be youthful experimentation.

"He took my childhood away from me. Your childhood is supposed to be the best years of your life - nobody deserves to go through this," she said.

When Hogg was charged in 2006, he resigned as a Sunday School teacher and Boys' Brigade leader at Drumreagh Presbyterian, near Ballymoney.

He still holds a senior position as a committee member.

The church Director of Social Services, Lindsay Conway, said: "We would not support anyone with that level of conviction being a church leader."

Mr Conway also condemned the verbal abuse Miss Walker received in court from some members of the congregation.

"I was called a tramp. To be honest I feared that I was going to get lynched," she said.

"My barrister said she has never seen such an outburst in all her years of court - these people are meant to be Christians."

Hogg's family said he had shown remorse and was "hoping to move on with his life".

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