A man has been given two life sentences for the rape of two young girls in Athlone.
The two girls, aged six and nine, were attending a birthday party in the town when they were lured away by the man to a nearby house where the offences occurred.
The Irish Independent reports that the accused made a full admission to the assault during a fifth interview by the Gardaí.
It’s reported that family members wept as the charges and details of the offences were read out in court.
The man remained in custody at Castlerea Prison since he was initially remanded there in October of last year.
In a victim impact statement the mother of one of the girls, said her daughter was traumatised by the assault.
“Our lives changed forever that day,” she said. “I feel I am living a nightmare I can’t wake up from….Inside, I am slowly dying.”
“She doesn’t feel safe anymore,” said the mother, who added that she fears for her daughter’s future.
The judge said that he found it too upsetting to rehash the details of the assault at the Central Criminal Court.