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Man jailed for indecently assaulting a sleeping grandmother has conviction upheld

A man jailed for indecently assaulting a sleeping grandmother has failed in a bid to overturn his conviction.

Barry Mooney (28) formerly of Brompton Park, Belfast, challenged the guilty verdict reached by a retrial jury who heard an audio account from his accuser after her death.

His lawyers argued that playing recordings of her sobbing and crying during the original cross-examination unfairly denied him the chance to establish whether her emotions were fuelled by embarrassment at having lied.

But the Court of Appeal held that the conviction was safe after rejecting all grounds of challenge.

In the first case of its kind, Mooney was convicted of indecent assault by a majority verdict at Belfast Crown Court last year and sentenced to 18 months in prison. His 54-year-old alleged victim had died from a heart attack shortly after the first trial was aborted in 2011.

Lord Justice Girvan said: "We are satisfied the judge's actual direction resulted in no injustice to the defence and it does not undermine the safety of the conviction."

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