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Man accused of litany of sexual offences against child freed on continuing bail

All of the offences are alleged to have occurred between April 1, 2014, and July 1, 2019, and relate to one female alleged injured party

A man who is accused of a litany of sexual offences involving a child will face Crown Court proceedings next month.

The accused appeared at Newry Magistrates’ on Wednesday for the purposes of a preliminary enquiry (PE), the legal process during which a case is referred to the higher court.

The defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is charged with four counts of sexual assault, sexual assault by penetration committing a sexual act in the presence of a child, attempting to intimidate someone to do an act, inciting a child to engage in a sexual act, inciting a family member to engage in sexual act and three counts of exposure.

As these charges were read, it was heard that all of the offences are alleged to have occurred between April 1, of 2014, and July 1, of 2019, with all relating to one alleged female injured party.

Appearing in court, the defendant, who is in his 50s, made no objection to the holding of a preliminary enquiry.

Prosecution submitted that based on the papers before the court there was a prima facie case to answer.

Defence solicitor Conor Downey made no contrary submissions.

District Judge Eamonn King was satisfied there was a prima facie case to answer and the defendant was released on continuing bail to appear before Newry Crown Court on February 23 for arraignment.

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