sundaylife

| 4.7°C Belfast

Paedophile ex-teacher told to expect jail again

Pensioner admits 30 charges of historic sex abuse against girl

Close

Phelim McGuigan

Phelim McGuigan

Phelim McGuigan

A former teacher has been told to expect a jail sentence after he admitted 30 charges of historic child sex abuse.

Phelim McGuigan (75) - who was previously jailed for child sex abuse - appeared at Newry Crown Court via video link from his solicitor's office last week to confess to a litany of offences committed against one female over a six-year period.

The former maths teacher admitted 24 counts of indecent assault, five of committing acts of gross indecency with or towards a child and one of taking an indecent photograph of a child, all committed between September 1984 and September 1990.

Prosecuting counsel Geraldine McCullough asked for a further nine similar offences to be "left on the books" while defence barrister Justin Byrne said he was seeking a pre-sentence probation report and a medical report ahead of sentencing.

Mr Byrne was also granted an application for McGuigan to be freed on bail pending sentence but Judge Gordon Kerr QC warned the pensioner "may anticipate and expect that one of the most obvious options, given the nature of this indictment, will be an immediate custodial sentence, so he should prepare himself for that".

McGuigan, from Rock Lodge on the Ashgrove Road in Newry, already knows what is ahead of him having been jailed in 2014 for previous offences committed against a little girl.

bizarre

The ex-teacher at St Brigid's High School in Armagh had pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting and committing an act of gross indecency with or towards the girl on dates between January 1, 1985, and December 31, 1990.

Waiving her right to anonymity so that the creep could be publicly named and shamed, she described then how she was repeatedly sexually abused between the ages of six to 11 years old by McGuigan who forced her to touch his private parts and take part in bizarre sex games.

The abuse came to an abrupt end when she decided to fight back and punched McGuigan in the face.

"I walked away and that's when the abuse ended," recalled McGuigan's victim.

"I just remember thinking, 'I just can't go through this again,' and I had landed the punch before I had anytime to feel anything.

"McGuigan looked shocked, there were no words spoken, just a lot of eye contact and an eerie silence, before he let go of my hand and walked away.

"I think he knew at that stage that the game was up, so to speak."

After being handed a 21-month sentence in December 2014 with an order to spend nine months in jail and the rest on licence, he spent that Christmas behind bars.

He faces that prospect again when he's sentenced on September 21.

Belfast Telegraph