An elderly man who repeatedly raped and abused a young girl in Tipperary throughout her teens will spend less than a year in prison because of his health problems.
The 79 year old, who cannot be named to protect his victim’s identity, pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to two charges of sexual assault and one charge of oral rape of the girl in Tipperary on dates between September 1995 and September 1998.
The court heard that these were sample charges and that he originally faced 58 charges.
The accused began abusing the girl after she showed interest in a sport he was playing and he began training her.
Mr Justice Sheehan handed down a six-year sentence for the offence of rape, but suspended the final five years in view of the precarious state of the defendant's health and his advanced years.
The man has been in custody since mid-October.