Celbridge sex offender jailed

A convicted Kildare sex offender has been sentenced to four years at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for sexually assaulting a little boy and a teenage girl.

A convicted Kildare sex offender has been sentenced to four years at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for sexually assaulting a little boy and a teenage girl.

Stewart Singleton was 16 when he abused the first victim, a six-year-old boy, in Singelton’s family home after calling the child over to look at his penis.

He abused the same boy on three other occasions and in the final incident he challenged the then 13-year-old victim to a competition over who could masturbate the quickest while reading a collection of pornographic magazines.

The incident with the female victim occurred when she 17 years old. She was trying to apply aftersun lotion to her sunburnt back in the golf club where she worked at the time.

Singleton, who worked in the same club, brought her into a toilet, locked the door behind them, opened her shirt and tried to take her bra off.

Singleton (43) of The Grove, Cellbridge is a separated father of three who is no longer allowed access to his children.

He pleaded guilty to five counts of indecent assault and sexual assault on dates between January 1985 and August 2005.

Singleton has a previous conviction for sexual assault of a minor for which he was jailed for 10 months in March 2007.

Tara Burns BL, prosecuting, said the victims wanted Singleton to be named in the media but wanted their identities protected.

The offences came to light when the boy disclosed the abuse first to his family and then to the gardai in 2007. The boy’s father confronted Singelton and, although he initially denied the allegations, he then broke down and apologised.

The girl did not report the attack on her until the following year. Singleton was interviewed twice in 2009, made full admissions and co-operated with the garda investigation.

Ronan Kennedy BL, defending, said his client is extremely remorseful for his actions and stated in a letter: “What I did haunts me everyday”.

Counsel said his client has attended for treatment with the Lighthouse Programme for sex offenders. A report from the programme stated he now has insight into his criminal behaviour and is considered to be at a low risk of re-offending.

Mr Kennedy said Singleton is due to be married this year and his partner is fully aware of his past, stands by him and believes he has rehabilitated.

She also wrote what counsel described as a “moving letter” for the court in which she outlined her love and support of Singleton describing him as a man with “many good qualities”.

Judge Martin Nolan said he was satisfied that Singelton may not have reached full maturity at 16 years old when the abuse first started but noted he was 20, 23 and in his 30s on the subsequent offences, and therefore these crimes were “more heinous”.

He accepted that Singelton was at a low risk of re-offending and had offered his sincere apologies and regrets in the letter he had written to the court.

“But I must impose a custodial sentence. What he did was too serious to ignore,” Judge Nolan said before he suspended the last two years on condition that Singleton remain under supervision of the Probation Service for two years.