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Alleged abuser in anonymity fight bailed

A prosecution solicitor told the Magistrates Court in Londonderry yesterday that a woman who is the alleged injured party in a child sex abuse case "has adopted a neutral stance" in relation to whether or not her alleged abuser should be named.

The solicitor made the comment in the case of a 50-year-old local man who is charged with six counts of indecently assaulting a female child over an eight-year period starting 20 years ago.

Applying for anonymity in the case, defence solicitor Michael McGee said the defendant strenuously denied the charges. He said the complainant in the case was a well-known person in the city. District Judge Barney McElholm said he was making no order in relation to the anonymity application but added if the complainant was identified as a result of media reports, the media could face criminal proceedings.

He released the defendant on his own bail of £500 to appear before the Crown Court for his arraignment on August 28 and ordered the defendant not to contact the complainant nor any other prosecution witnesses.

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