A Donegal man has received a suspended sentence after pleading guilty to the defilement of a child.
The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared at Letterkenny Circuit Court last week.
The court heard that in dates in June and August, 2007, he had sex with a 16-year-old girl in a jeep and a car. He was 27-years-old at the time. The pair first met when he saw the girl working in a takeaway and he began texting her. They began to meet up and had sex on a number of occasions.
An investigating Garda told the court the girl told Gardai the man knew her age “from the very start” as she had told him. The relationship ended not long before her 17th birthday. The man was arrested and admitted he knew the girl was 16. He told Gardai the girl had told him: “Don’t let that stop you.” Defence barrister Mr Peter Nolan said his client fully admitted the offence, felt “fully vested” in the relationship and “had sincere feelings for the victim.”
Judge Matthew Deery sentenced the man to one year’s imprisonment on each of the two counts of defilement and directed he undertake 240 hours community service in lieu. He also placed him on the Sex Offender’s Register for 10 years.