Abuser is jailed for 18 months

A former Derry City Council employee who sexually abused a teenage boy has been jailed for 18 months.

Brendan McGowan, of Brewsters Close, pleaded guilty to nine sex offences committed between September 1989 and June 1993.

The victim was between 12 and 16-years-old when he was abused by McGowan. The 69-year-old was employed as a swimming instructor at William Street Baths at the time.

Derry Crown Court heard the victim was a talented musician and met McGowan through their mutual interest in jazz music.

The 69-year-old invited the boy to his flat to listen to music and it was there the abuse took place.

The abuse took place on a regular basis when the boy went to McGowan’s flat. It escalated to touching, performing oral sex and McGowan performing a sex act over the boy as he lay on the ground naked.

The abuse came to an end when the victim was 15 and he realised what was happening was wrong. He didn’t 
return to McGowan’s flat but did not report the matter 
to police until 2012.

Passing sentence, Judge Philip Babington said the abuse has had a ‘profound effect’ on the victim, who still questions his sexuality and is unable to sustain a relationship.

He added McGowan was sexually interested in the victim and offended to ‘satisfy his own desires. That was very wrong and the defendant knew that but didn’t stop at anytime.’

Judge Babington said it was an aggravating factor that there ‘was an element of seduction or grooming in this matter’.

Jailing McGowan, the judge also ordered him to spend three years on probation and sign the sex offenders register for ten years.

The 69-year-old is also banned from working with children and young adults.