Woman abused by cousin ‘totally robbed’ of her life

The victim of a ‘campaign’ of sexual abuse by her own cousin has said she feels ‘totally robbed’ of her life, a court has heard.

The woman, who has waived her right to anonymity, was raped and sexually abused by her cousin when she was aged between six and ten-years-old.

Frankie McFadden, of Moyola Drive, pleaded guilty to nine sex offences, including rape, indecent assault and gross indecency.

The 54-year-old also admitted common assault and making a threat to kill. All the offences occurred between May 1975 and May 1985.

Derry Crown Court heard McFadden, who is ten years older than his cousin, began abusing his victim when he was 16.

The court was told the first incident of abuse was when McFadden put the child’s hand inside his trousers and made her touch his penis.

She did not understand what was happening and didn’t tell anyone what had taken place.

The court was told that after this incident, the abuse would happen once every couple of weeks and then progressed to two or three times a week.

It was revealed the girl was given sweets and lollipops by McFadden before he would expose his penis to her and make her perform oral sex on him.

The court heard that he would also get on top of her and rub himself against her.

McFadden raped his victim on a ‘regular’ basis when she was aged between seven and ten-years-old.

During the first rape, the victim said she had “never felt pain like it before, had tears running down her face and couldn’t breathe”.

The court heard McFadden told his cousin the abuse was “our wee secret”. However, it ended when she moved to England with her family.

The victim moved back to Derry over a year later and McFadden moved into her home when she was about 14. At this stage he began to subject her to physical abuse.

On one occasion he pushed her downstairs.

He also left her with a black eye and grabbed her by the throat.

The court was told that the victim tried to tell her mother about the abuse. However, McFadden told her she was dirty and no one would believe her.

He also made a threat to kill her.

The victim eventually told her mother about her ordeal when she was in her early 20s but felt that she couldn’t report it to police while her father was still alive.

McFadden was interviewed by police in April 2012 and admitted he was sexually attracted to his cousin when she was a child.

He said he had a “notion of her” but was not attracted to other children.

He made admissions to some of the allegations of abuse. However, he said he could not recall having sexual intercourse with her or making her perform oral sex on him.

The 54-year-old also told police he wanted to apologise to his victim for what he put her through.

The court heard the victim has “suffered considerably2 as a result of the abuse. She told police that McFadden had ruined her life and that she feels “totally robbed of my life”.

Defence QC Martin Rodgers accepted the case involved a “breach of trust” and that this was an aggravating factor.

However, he said the plea of guilty which “doesn’t come easy in this type of case” should give some “considerable closure to the victim”.

Judge Philip Babington adjourned sentencing until next month, stating he would like some time to consider the case.

McFadden was remanded in custody and will appear in court again on January 9.