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A brother who defiled his sister for years in the family home has been imprisoned.

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A man was sentenced to seven years in prison by a Central Criminal Court after having unlawful carnal knowledge of his biological sister for years in their family home.

Ms Justice Deidre Murphy sentenced John Paul Hegarty, 41, of Little Island, Cork, Ireland.

According to Echo Live, the judge stated that the victim could not recall a time in her childhood when she was not sexually abused by her brother.

Nora Hegarty, 35, waived her right to anonymity because she wanted her brother to be identified for the s3xual abuse crimes that occurred in the family’s home in Glanmire for several years in the 1990s.

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Nora Hegarty said: “I did this for all the people out there in the same situation as me, so they might have the courage to speak out.

“I thought reporting it would break me but it made me stronger. I want to say to people in my situation, don’t be afraid, you have people to pick you up even if you feel like you cannot go on.”

John Paul Hegarty did not accept the jury’s verdicts.Ms Justice Murphy stated that by failing to show remorse or responsibility for his actions, he had refused the most significant mitigation in a sentence for s3xual crimes.

The jury returned 23 unanimous guilty verdicts against John Paul Hegarty, who now begins an eight-year sentence, one of which is suspended.

The 41-year-old denied r*ping his younger sister over a three-year period, but the jury did not believe him, and John Paul Hegarty was found guilty on 23 counts after deliberations.

Nora was between the ages of 9 and 12 at the time of the sexual assaults on her, while her brother was between the ages of 15 and 18.

Ms Justice Murphy said: “Her mother found herself in the awful position of having to give evidence in a trial where her daughter was the victim and her son was the perpetrator”.

Ending her victim impact statement, Nora Hegarty thanked friends, family, police and her legal team along with Support After Crime for their help.

She added: “I would not have done it without any of you. You believed in me and helped me carry on. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

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