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Man accused of multiple historic rape and incest offences against his sister to face Crown Court

He was released on his own bail of £500 to appear before Newry Crown Court in May

A man accused of multiple historic rape and incest offences will face Crown Court proceedings next month.

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

The accused, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is charged seven counts of rape, seven counts of incest by man with female under 14 and eight counts of indecently assaulting a female.

As these charges were read, it was heard that the defendant is accused of committing these offences between February 29, 1976, and May 26, 1981, with all naming a single alleged injured party.

The particulars of the incest charges allege that the accused had “carnal knowledge of a female person… who was under the age of 14 years and who was to your knowledge your sister”.

Appearing via videolink from his solicitor’s office, the defendant 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 John Murphy made no contrary submissions.

Deputy District Judge Anne Marshall said that she was satisfied there was a prima facie case to answer.

The defendant was released on his own bail of £500 to appear before Newry Crown Court on May 27 for arraignment.

Following an application from Mr Murphy, in which he outlined the severity of the case, Deputy District Judge Marshall granted two counsel for the Crown Court.

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