Irish dancing teacher may be named tomorrow

An Irish dancing teacher who was ruled by the High Court to have sexually abused a pupil over a seven year period may be named tomorrow.

An Irish dancing teacher who was ruled by the High Court to have sexually abused a pupil over a seven year period may be named tomorrow.

The man now in his late 60s was sued by a former pupil, a woman now in her 40s, who was awarded €400,000 in damages this week.

She took the High Court Civil action after juries in two criminal trails failed to agree on a decision in the sex offence charges.

Tomorrow Judge Sean Ryan says he will consider his decision after hearing submissions from both sides following the former dance pupils request the man’s identity be revealed.

During the action the woman claimed the abuse began after the teacher engaged in “grooming activities” when she was six-years-old and the sexual assaults began when she was 12.

She said they occurred between 1982 and 1989 at the dance classes and when being driven home from classes by him and they increased in seriousness as she got older.

The man denied all her allegations claiming they were made up to get back at him because she was in love with him and he had spurned a suggestion he would leave his wife for her.

He was charged with indecent assault and underwent two trials in which juries were unable to reach verdicts before the DPP decided not to pursue the matter any further. She then brought a High Court action for damages claiming he had taken her childhood from her.

On Tuesday Mr Justice Ryan, in a judgment said between 1992 and 1994 the woman received counselling and was persuaded by her counsellor and a social worker to make a complaint to the gardaí because of concerns he might still be abusing children.

The teacher had brought High Court proceedings seeking to stop his prosecution after the first trial and these were eventually dismissed in the Supreme Court.

The judge said the proposition by the man that she had concocted the allegations to get back at him because he had spurned advances from her was wholly unconvincing and did not accord with logic or with her behaviour and his evidence was “inconsistent and unconvincing”.

There was a conflict between the evidence he gave to the High Court and answers he gave to questions from a garda investigating the matter. He failed to refute the weight of evidence showing him to be an abuser of children, the judge said.

Justice Ryan said he was satisfied she suffered from a serious “psychological injury” inflicted by the defendant, diagnosed as post traumatic stress, which blocked her ability and will to bring proceedings earlier.

A statement from the woman’s solicitor said she was completely vindicated by the judge’s decision.