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Dalkey Accused May Be Named In Court

Sunday Business Post 03 January 2010 By John Burke

The names of the alleged sexual abusers of the woman at the centre of the so-called ‘Dalkey House of Horrors’ case may be entered into evidence in forthcoming civil proceedings.

Cynthia Owen claimed to have given birth to a baby at the age of 11 after suffering years of abuse. At an inquest into the death of her baby daughter, whose remains were found dumped in a laneway in Dun Laoghaire more than 30 years ago, Owen made a statement listing those she accused of being part of a group who abused her.

The document listing those names have never been made public and is understood to include several former members of the Garda Síochána. It is believed that seven of the men on the list are still alive and live in Dublin. None of the men have ever been charged or convicted with any sexual offence.

Owen told the inquest that her late mother, Josephine Murphy, had been aware of the sexual abuse and claimed that Murphy had killed the baby with a knitting needle.

Dr Kieran Geraghty, who was Dublin county coroner at that time, declined to make that statement public given the accusatory nature of the document.

That document is now being sought in a discovery order taken by one of Owen’s remaining siblings, Catherine Stevenson, in a High Court challenge to the coroner court decision in February 2007.

The jury at Dublin County Coroner’s Court unanimously ruled that the newborn baby was Owen’s daughter.

The inquest ruled that the baby died at Owen’s family home at White’s Villas in Dalkey on April 4,1973 of shock and haemorrhage due to multiple stab wounds when it was just hours old. An open verdict was returned on the death.

Owen, who is now in her 40s and lives in Wales, had maintained the child was conceived as a result of consistent sexual abuse in her family home and testified that she was repeatedly raped from the age of seven or eight into her teenage years.

She has spoken to The Sunday Business Post ahead of the publication of her memoirs.