The following two articles appeared in “Ireland on Sunday” in July/August 1999 shortly after Nora Wall and Pablo McCabe were convicted of raping a child. The first is dated just after Nora Wall was sentenced to life in prison (by a judge who described her as a “gang rapist”.) The second appeared after the spectacular collapse of the case against the accused. You will note that there is a distinct change in the tone of the second article.
ALSO these articles illustrate how a false allegation of child abuse can be made.
9 August 2006
(1) Ireland on Sunday, 25 July 1999 (extract) John Mooney and Kathy Donaghy
Since the conviction, a number of former residents of St. Michael’s child care centre in Cappoquin have come forward to state that the picture painted in court bears no resemblance to the Nora Wall they knew.
However one former resident told Ireland On Sunday that he knows of a former female resident at the centre who claims she was raped by Nora Wall.
Gerry Kelly, 42 who now lives in Cappoquin and is a founder member of the Alliance for the Healing of Institutional Abuse, said that the woman, who is now 25 years of age and in a very distressed state, came to a meeting of former residents of the centre, which was held in Dungarven on July 8.
He said Regina Walsh, the gang rape victim of Nora Wall and Pablo McCabe was also at that meeting.
He said the woman, who is a close family friend, [my emphasis] was raped by Wall, then Sister Dominic of the Sisters of Mercy, at least once during her time at the centre between 1982 and 1990.
He said the young woman needed help but was not yet prepared to come forward. “She is not even prepared to talk to counsellors yet “, he said.
Kelly said he would hold another meeting for residents of St. Michael’s in September.
(2) Ireland on Sunday, 1 August 1999 (extract) Eugene Masterson
Former residents were invited to a meeting in Dungarven on July 8 last to hear how they could process compensation claims if they felt they were abused there [My emphasis].
The meeting was organised by the self-proclaimed Alliance for the Healing of Institutional Abuse (AHIA). The founder is 42-year-old Gerry Kelly.
Kelly lives outside Dungarven and was a resident of St. Michael’s from 1969 to 1975.
While alleging he was beaten there, he also claims it was like a holiday camp compared to the infamous Artane Industrial School in Dublin where he also spent time.
Gerry Kelly says that another proposed meeting for next month may be in doubt because of the overturning of the convictions.
“That case is after knocking the thing back, there’s no justice in this country, you know yourself”, he says. … “A lot of things happened in Cappoquin that I didn’t approve of and I went to the Reverend Mother in charge and I was told to keep it to myself what I saw.
This is all a f….. stitch up as far as I’m concerned”.
Retired Garda sergeant Vincent Bergin and his wife Brid had for many years, the only house located across the road from the home. They would allow their six children to play in the home and invited kids from St. Michaels to their own house. One of the children they hosted was Regina Walsh.
Vincent Bergin described the allegations against Sister Dominic as “bloody ridiculous”. …
“Where Dominic made the mistake was that all those weirdos – although most of the people who went there were decent - she allowed them to come back and stay. She used to say: ‘That’s their home, that’s their only home’.
The woman was naive.”
[We can safely assume that no one is going to be that naive again and no one is going to invite children from an institution into their home either.]