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Mom jailed for sex video of daughter, 4

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File photo

Published Jul 17, 2012

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Dublin - An Irish mother who sexually assaulted and exploited her four-year-old daughter by filming her with the child's father naked from the waist down has been jailed for 16 months.

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The video, described by a judge on Monday as “disturbing and pretty explicit”, only came to light after a member of the public contacted the gardai after finding a smashed cellphone and viewing the contents of the SIM card.

The court heard the footage showed the child's father lying on a bed, naked from the waist down, with his daughter's face in close proximity to his groin area.

The cellphone video was viewed by Judge Martin Nolan at an earlier hearing and those seated in the courtroom could hear the woman laughing and telling the child to “smile for the camera”.

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The 28-year-old woman, who cannot be named to protect the child's identity, pleaded guilty to the offences which happened on March 12, 2010, and was sentenced to three years at the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on Monday, with all but 16 months of the sentence suspended.

Judge Nolan said he found the cellphone footage to be “disturbing” and said the accused was “right to plead guilty”. As a mother, the woman had a duty to protect her child but she had “failed lamentably” to do so.

The judge said that while he accepted that the woman was “not intellectually gifted” she should have known that what she did was “dreadfully serious and reprehensible”.

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However, he said that he was taking into account her expressions of remorse, saying: “I think she is remorseful and is sorry for what she did on that night.” The woman nodded her head and fought back tears as the judge spoke.

He said that on the night in question, she was in a drunken state but the facts of the case remained “extremely serious”.

“I think she was truly remorseful and it certainly upset her,” Judge Nolan said.

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Det Gda Brian Jennings told defence counsel Giollaiosa O Lideadha SC that when gardai later showed the video footage to the woman she said she was sickened by it and she began visibly gagging.

Defence counsel said his client had a serious drink problem and there was a very unsavoury psychological factor involved in his client's relationship with her ex-partner, the man in the video.

A report handed into the court said she is at a low risk of committing sexual offences in the future and that she should continue with therapy.

The court was also told she hadn't drunk alcohol since February 2011 and had completed a 12-step alcoholic recovery programme. - Irish Independent

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