Belfast Telegraph

Child sex teacher admits new offences

By Michael Donnelly

A self-confessed paedophile teacher who was jailed almost 15 years ago for a series of historical abuse charges has confessed to sexually assaulting other pupils at the same west Belfast school.

In August 2000, former primary school teacher Daniel Patrick Eccles was jailed for six years for the sex abuse of 12 boys at St Aidan's Primary School in Whiterock dating back nearly four decades to 1975 and 1976.

Yesterday at Belfast Crown Court, the 68-year-old - with an address in Granemore Road, Tassagh, near Keady in south Armagh - pleaded guilty to a total of 15 other charges.

They included 13 indecent assaults on two boys, and two of gross indecency involving one of the boys, dating from April 1976 to July 1977. Three other charges were not proceeded with.

No details surrounding either of the abuse cases was given to the court during the short arraignment hearing.

However, Belfast Recorder, Judge David McFarland told the soft spoken pensioner: "You have pleaded guilty to certain matters and there are consequences."

These include being placed on the Sex Offenders' Register.

Judge McFarland said the former teacher may have been on the register in the past, but that "at this stage" he would be placed on it again for five years.

"However, following your sentencing you will be advised of the exact period," he said.

Eccles was released on continuing bail for completion of a number of reports before sentencing, fixed for May 8 next.

Belfast Telegraph

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