Friday, February 27, 2009

Donegal priest loses appeal against rape conviction

A Co Donegal priest has lost his appeal against his conviction for raping a teenage parishioner in the church sacristy over 20 years ago.

Forty-nine-year-old Daniel Doherty, from Derriscleigh, Carrigart, challenged his 2006 conviction on a number of grounds, including that statements taken from two witnesses who were in the US and unavailable to attend the trial should not have been before the jury.

In May 2006, a jury found him guilty of raping the then 13-year-old girl in the sacristy on dates in 1985 and indecently assaulting her in the parochial house and in his car in 1985 and 1984.

Today, the three-judge Court of Appeal said he had not established that there were any grounds on which they could set aside the conviction.

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(Source: II)