Take-away worker admits sexual assault

The courthouse at Bishop Street, Derry.
The courthouse at Bishop Street, Derry.

A man who ran a takeaway restaurant in the Waterside area of Derry has admitted sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl who worked for him.

Tian Sun Chi (47), from the Top of the Hill in Derry, appeared at the local Crown Court where he pleaded guilty to the seven charges which occurred between June 1, 2014 and September 2, 2014.

All of the charges related to the same victim over a three month period.

The court heard the girl started work in the takeaway in May 2014 and a couple of weeks after she started Chi started touching her sexually. On one occasion, he tried to put his hand down her top but she stopped him. On other occasions, Chi touched her on various parts of her body through her clothing.

The court heard that the young woman said that Chi tried to touch her almost every time she worked.

On another occasion, he tried to kiss her.

Eventually, the girl told her mother and police were informed.

In October 2014, the girl gave a statement to police and Chi was interviewed in March 2015 and denied all the allegations. A prosecution barrister described the girl as ‘vulnerable’.

Defence barrister Mr Dean Mooney said Chi was a Chinese national who came to Derry in 1996 and was married with four children.

He said Chi worked six days a week preparing food in the takeaway and the females who worked there essentially took orders. Mr Mooney said that, ‘of the dozens of young girls who have worked there, there have been no other complaints.’

The court was told that if Chi was imprisoned it would cause considerable hardship to the family.

Judge Philip Babington said he would pass sentence on September 11.