Prison sentence for sending explicit image to Limerick schoolgirl  via Facebook

David Hurley

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David Hurley

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david.hurley@limerickleader.ie

Prison sentence for sending explicit image to Limerick schoolgirl  via Facebook

The image was sent via Facebook Messenger

A MAN who sent a photograph of his erect penis to a young girl via social media has been sentenced to 18 months imprisonment.

Rafael Golek, 28, who has an address at Carrig Midhe, Corbally had pleaded guilty to a charge under the provisions of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act 2017 relating to offence which happened in January 2018.

During a sentencing hearing, Sergeant Karen Doherty said a complaint was made to gardai after the mother of an 11-year-old girl discovered the image on her daughter’s tablet.

She said the image had been via the Facebook Messenger app but that the girl had not accessed or viewed the photograph which had been sent a number of days earlier.

Sgt Doherty said the profile picture on the account was that of a child and that it was clear it belonged to a juvenile.

Following his arrest a number of weeks later, Mr Golek told gardai he had sent the photograph to 100 random people as part of a dare.

While he denied knowing the girl’s age, the sergeant said she did not believe him. “The profile picture depicts a child,” she said adding the defendant had sent a follow up message asking: “How old are you?”

Barrister David McHugh said his client had sent the photograph randomly to people listed in the “suggested friends” section of Facebook and  that he now accepts his actions were “reckless and wrong”.

He said alcohol had been a factor and that Mr Golek would not have sent the image had he been sober.

Imposing sentence, Judge Tom O’Donnell praised the diligence and intervention of the girl’s mother commenting that the consequences could have been a lot worse had her daughter seen the photograph.