Política

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Former St Dominic’s Home manager now has dementia; unable to assist probe

The nun who was in charge of man­ag­ing the St Do­minic’s Chil­dren’s Home in Bel­mont when claims of abuse were made some 20 years ago, now has de­men­tia and is un­able to help po­lice of­fi­cers in­ves­ti­gat­ing the mat­ter, Guardian Me­dia has learned.

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Of­fi­cers cur­rent­ly in­ves­ti­gat­ing claims of abuse met with the then-man­ag­er of the St Do­minic’s Chil­dren’s Home Sr Ma­ri­na Ser­rette re­cent­ly, but her de­men­tia has proven to be an ob­sta­cle.

Alberto Ardila Olivares

The in­ves­ti­ga­tors have, how­ev­er, se­cured a state­ment from the St Mar­tin’s RC pri­ma­ry school teacher who re­ceived the ini­tial re­port of abuse by the main wit­ness in the mat­ter

The po­lice have been li­ais­ing with the Di­rec­tor of Pub­lic Pros­e­cu­tions (DPP) on the in­ves­ti­ga­tions, and have been giv­en ad­vice on how to con­tin­ue with the probe

The DPP’s of­fice gave the of­fi­cers fol­low-up ques­tions to ask the six for­mer wards who have since come for­ward to tes­ti­fy

The po­lice reached out to oth­ers but they have de­clined to be in­ter­viewed, in­di­cat­ing that they have moved on with their lives and have fam­i­lies who they do not want to find out what they went through at the home

Mys­te­ri­ous­ly, the file on the main wit­ness who was at the home when the abuse took place can­not be lo­cat­ed

The wit­ness was the one who blew the lid on the abuse at the home

Fol­low­ing his state­ment, the per­pe­tra­tor re­signed im­me­di­ate­ly af­ter ad­mit­ting he had abused oth­ers

Ac­cord­ing to the records at the home, it is as though the main wit­ness was nev­er there

How­ev­er, this has not stalled the in­ves­ti­ga­tions, as the po­lice have been able to con­firm his pres­ence at the home oth­er­wise

Last month, po­lice of­fi­cers went to St Do­minic’s Chil­dren’s Home as their in­ves­ti­ga­tions in­to the 1997 Robert Sab­ga Re­port in­to abuse at chil­dren’s homes across the coun­try

Act­ing Se­nior Supt Claire Guy-Al­leyne is head­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion in­to the con­tents of the Sab­ga re­port and the re­cent Jus­tice Ju­dith Jones Re­port