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Connemara man found guilty of sex abuse of schoolboy

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A 58-year-old Connemara man has been found guilty by a jury of the sexual abuse of a schoolboy over a four-year period during the 1970’s.

James Kelly, a native of Connemara, who has lived in Galway city since 1981, and now resides at 22 Beal Srutha, Ballybane, denied sixteen charges of indecently assaulting the boy between January 1976 and December, 1979.

The three-day trial at Galway Circuit Criminal Court was told the accused told the then victim that what he and the victim was doing was wrong and if he told anyone he would be taken away from his family.

Prosecuting barrister, Conor Fahy told the jury of six men and six women that the accused was 21 when he started to abuse the boy who was aged 6 or 7 at the time.

The victim, who is now 44, said the abuse started with touching and escalated as time progressed.

He said it took place every day at various locations, including a church, a school and a business premises.

The victim said he told his parents about the abuse in 2003 and finally made a complaint to Gardai in 2007 when he became concerned for his own children’s safety.

The jury returned a unanimous guilty verdict on all sixteen charges.

Prosecuting State barrister, Conor Fahy, objected to an application by defence counsel, Bernard Madden to grant Kelly bail pending sentence.

Judge Rory McCabe said that in the interests of justice, Kelly had to be remanded in custody.

Judge McCabe remanded Kelly in custody to appear before the court again on February 18th next for sentence.

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304 new cases of Covid-19 nationwide

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – 304 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported this evening.

47 coronavirus patients are in hospital, with 13 in intensive care.

210 cases of the Delta variant have been identified in Ireland so far.

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Galway TD demands no more “patronising comments” from Health Minister over National Maternity Hospital

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A Galway TD has asked the Health Minister to take action on the National Maternity Hospital rather than making patronising comments or offering promises.

Deputy Catherine Connolly was contributing to a Dáil debate on the ownership and operation of the hospital, which has been a long-running matter of controversy.

Particpating in the discussion, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly acknowledged the issues raised, particularly given the history of women’s health in this country.

However, he said he would only bring a governance recommendation to Goverment if he had clear, unambiguous and watertight confirmation of the full operational independence of the hospital.

Deputy Connolly wasn’t won over by this assurance – and said it falls short of what is needed.

To hear more, tune into Galway Bay fm news.

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County Council drawing up plans to enhance Connemara bridges

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Galway County Council is in the process of drawing up a design plan for remedial and safety work on bridges which serve the districts of Lettermore and Lettermullen in Connemara.

At a meeting of the municipal district, Connemara County Councillors were told that the bridges are basically sound and that the remedial works are being scheduled for later this year.

They are the longest bridges in Connemara. DroicheadAnachMheáin, DroicheadCharraiganLogáin and DroichedChuigéil.

They link CeantarnanOileán – that is LeitirMóir and LeitirMealláin – to the mainland.

For some time past surface cracks and fissures in the structures have caused concern locally and CoisteBóithreChonamara have highlighted the issue.

Senior Council Engineer, Damian Mitchell, told Connemara Councillors that a report from Sandberg Consulting Engineers in London had shown that the bridges were basically sound.

However, certain elements of concern emerged about some locations and remedial works are to be carried out.

It was not clear from the meeting if traffic lights might be part of the plan or if weight limits might be considered.

Councillors are to meet members of the roads committee on the 5th of July but the Connemara Councillors Chairman, Séamus Walsh said the design plan would ultimately be a matter for the engineers and for the elected Councillors.

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