A 31 year old man has been jailed for 2 years for having sex with a 14 year old girl.
He was 24 at the time of the offence in Sligo in 2012 and claimed he thought the girl was older.
The court heard the accused and victim had been drinking at an apartment in Sligo with some other people when they had sex in a bedroom.
The victim – who was at a vulnerable time of her life – pretended she was two months pregnant in the hope that it would put him off.
When the accused was questioned by gardai he told them he thought the girl was 18 or 19 saying ‘I’d know if she was 14 or 18’.
The court heard the victim had had to get psychiatric help following the offence.
The accused was due to go on trial for rape but pleaded guilty to the defilement of a child under the age of 15.
Judge Tara Burns said sight shouldn’t be lost that older men having sex with girls under the age of 15 is a very significant offence.
She jailed the accused, who has a long list of minor convictions, for 3 years with one suspended and warned him she doesn’t give people second chances.
She told the accused it was difficult for her to suspend the year and she’s no hesitation in making him serve it if if he breaches any of the conditions.