Two And A Half Years


Former Irish Times sports journalist Tom Humphries

Previously: 16,000 Texts



George Gibney

“I think the sentence is too low for what has happened and I’d like to congratulate that girl who came out and exposed him…

In a sense I feel sorry for the likes of David Walsh and Donal Og Cusack because these people have a habit of surrounding themselves with powerful people and wangling themselves into poweful positions where people surrounding them believe in nearly anything you say.

Because I saw this happening in swimming and how [George] Gibney got away and evaded justice.

He not only had powerful connections in swimming. He had it coming from Government down.

And he evaded justice in the end by manipulating the whole way of getting off on these things.”

Former swimmer Gary O’Toole’ s father Aidan on Liveline this afternoon.

Previously: George Gibney on Broadsheet

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104 thoughts on “Two And A Half Years

    1. Charger Salmons

      Texts even.
      An entirely appropriate sentence,particularly as we don’t know what the sexual offence was.
      Why everyone on here is sharpening their pitchfork is beyond me as similar lenient sentences are handed down for far worse offences.

      1. Listrade

        Yes we do.

        We know he sent unsolicited pictures of his chap to her shortly after they started texting.

        We know that on the first abuse he performed oral sex on her and then made her perform it on him.

        There were other offences. All discussed in court.

  1. Bertie Blenkinsop

    I don’t think the punishment fits the crime in this case, if you were the girl’s parents you’d be very disappointed I’d imagine.

      1. newsjustin

        Swung what? Without the references, do you think he’d have gotten 5 years, 10 years? I doubt it.

        It does seem low, given the gravity of the offence. But I’m not sure people who write references for criminals should be hammered till they’re forced to apologise.

        1. Birdie

          From Michael O’Toole’s tweet: “She also said she gave “careful consideration” to references for #TomHumphries from two friends (David Walsh and Donal Og Cusack).”

          1. Listrade

            don’t think they can say that. He pleaded guilty. He admitted it immediately when the he was confronted by his family over texts and when the Gardai were notified. Their references would have come in full knowledge of this and after the guilty plea.

          2. Nigel

            Yeah, I remembered that after I posted… I don’t want to see them hammered, (though they will be) but if they were willing to give those references on the public record, they’re going to have to stand by them.

          3. newsjustin

            Yeah. I’m not sure these references are given with the intention of getting someone off the hook. They’re to say, he’s done this crime, but he’s not pure evil with no hope of rehabilitation.

  2. Christopher

    Well this is Ireland where all crimes are given ridiculously short sentences that are often never close to being served so it’s hardly surprising.
    At least his career and reputation are gone- too often a veil for the despicable.

    1. God IV

      Well, that’s clearly not true. However, there is definitely a disconnect in some cases between the crime and the punishment meted out, alright.

    2. Nice Anne1

      There are about 400 sex offenders in Jail in Ireland currently. About 100 are jailed and released in any one year.
      95 of these are in Arbour Hill.

      Only 12 are lifers.

    1. Bertie Blenkinsop

      “Humphries (54), from Sutton, north Dublin, pleaded guilty to two counts of defilement of a child in Dublin between December 5th, 2010, and February 19th, 2011, and four counts of inviting a child to participate in a sexually explicit, obscene or indecent act between January 2010 and March 2011.
      In law, defilement means engaging in a sexual act with a child.”

  3. Looking In

    Wow, having seemingly more empathy for a sex offender than an innocent child is a sad cold reflection on the warped world we live in. What does this tell victims of abuse? Unreal

  4. Nice Anne1

    Great. He will be free to re-offend again in 2020.

    In 1992, the pedophile rapist of the child at the centre of the x case got 4 years in prison. (he served 3 years)
    In 1999 he attacked and assaulted another girl. He got another 4 years in jail in 2002.

    In Ireland, the re-offending rate for this type of crime is really high compared to global figures compiled in the Harris and Hanson study (the benchmark for understanding these figures: 15% of sex offenders released (since 2008) re-offended within three years, 50% re-offended after 3 years or more.

      1. Dubhlinn

        This all goes out the window if there is a risk of re-offending or a history of a similar crime. Where the “life” sentence can be given (15-10 years)

    1. Dubhlinn

      If the accused co-operates 8-9 years, if not, 11-12 years. A plea is negotiated and can be any term. 2.5 years in inexplicable.

    1. Birdie

      You’re doing a great job of being an adult today :)

      Thanks for the sentencing context, very helpful.

  5. Daisy Chainsaw

    His good friends who wrote character references can visit him for the few weeks he’ll be in prison and then they can all go out and celebrate together. Cusack and Walsh should be ashamed of themselves – “aside from being a child rapist, me mate Tom is a top guy who always gets his round in.” Disgusting.

    1. Cian

      Would you write a character reference for any of your close friends/family if they were arrested and due in court?
      If no, why not?
      If yes, do you have a “crime-threshold” where you would refuse to write a character reference? (I’m guessing it would be a ‘no’ for grooming)

  6. ahjayzis

    David Walsh and Donal Og Cusack should be really proud of themselves.

    And that judge should be forced to face the victim one on one before giving sentence. And the next victim, too.


    But sure I’m sure he was a family man with links to the GAA and known to the priesthood, so that’s Ireland.

    1. Dubhlinn

      They gave a PSV licence to the rapist in the x-case after he came out of prison.
      He was able to get even more easy access to young girls. He did it again.

    1. Lilly

      + 1 I’d like to know more about Judge Karen O’Connor. She sounds intellectually challenged to put it mildly.

  7. Andrew

    When someone’s as literally destroyed as Humphries is, deservedly, it’s time to find someone else to attack – there are enough other people in this society who deserve it.

    1. kellma

      Whatever do you mean! I am sure Hitler had excuses for his behavior and god love him, in the end, he felt so bad he killed himself. Sure…

      HOWEVER, the issue here is the overly lenient sentencing which Humphries, at least here, is not responsible for.
      It is not enough.

    2. Jim Bob Julius

      ‘Literally destroyed’?

      Has he been dismembered limb from limb? No?

      Then he hasn’t been ‘literally destroyed’. He has been figuratively destroyed and he did it to himself. Try to get your basic English right.

      And its not time to attack someone else. He got far less than he deserved and this needs to be appealed.

  8. Candy Crush Guru

    Is there a chance the DPP can appeal the sentence?
    I’m unfamiliar myself particularly where the defendant pleaded guilty

    1. Dubhlinn

      Oh dear. Answer is yes and no. Not as clearcut as to the circs of both.

      If some parts of due process were not being followed
      If undue pressure was brought on the judge
      If the judge is impaired at the time of sentencing
      (and this is the interesting one) If there is malice of forethought in the crime so it was not a spontaneous one off act.
      Failure to take the victim impact statement into consideration
      If the DPP decide to appeal, whichever basis they use has to be proven before sentencing can be looked at again.

  9. Andrew

    Bizarre sentence.
    There will be a witch hunt now for Walsh and Cusack. I wonder how the victim feels? The judge in this instance seems insensitive to put it mildly. I do wonder sometimes about their grasp on reality. I have known a few barristers who have since become judges and some of them were eccentric at relatively young ages.

      1. Andrew

        I know she has. I am referring to her comments and how she appeared to reach her decision on sentencing.

        1. rotide

          You mean the comments that were reported and the reports that suggested how she reached her decision.

    1. ahjayzis

      A witch hunt? More like accountability. You don’t have the back of a paedophile and escape scrutiny. I hope they’re hounded.

  10. martco

    cant believe he ended up in the same sentence as Con Houlihan…he wasn’t THAT good

    I’d say David Walsh sorry he opened his mouth now, silly man didn’t think that through

  11. Catherinecostelloe

    He was and is morbidly depressed and suffers with cardiomyopathy . He befriended the victim due to personal problems, her eating disorder and exchanged over 16,000 texts. He was suffering with depression, his marriage had collapsed. The misfortunate victim was suffering with depression as well. His actions are inexcusable because of victims age. He has lost family, employment, respect, attempted suicide twice, a sad old got , shunned by society. I think Humpries would have preferred 10 years.

    1. Lilly

      Sh*t happens to us all, Catherine, but it doesn’t give us carte blanche to go around ruining lives.

    2. Amorphous Kerry Blob

      I found that to be quite an interesting comment Catherine. Not sure if that is the best of compliments, as I am easily swayed at times, but it’s the most interesting comment I’ve read on this page.

  12. Nigel

    Okay, you cleaned up the comment, fine, it was atrocious. But are you going to allow the commenter to keep commenting on the site? Either they meant it, in which case they’re a monster, or they were willing to write that in the name of trolling for lulz, in which case they’re a slightly different kind of monster.

          1. ahjayzis

            That sad case is Broadsheet royalty. I called him out once and got banned for 2 weeks over something fairly innocuous – he was back within minutes with a new name. C’est la vie.

  13. gorugeen

    Shocking judgement. Hard not to feel sorry for him???!!! wtf? That child got a life sentence from him. I feel so sorry for his family too. His daughter will have a horrific time trying to come to terms with this. I really hope all the help available is given to all the folks whose lives he blighted.

  14. martco

    6 years for fiddling receipts for garlic bulbs vs 2 years for fiddling with children

    something not right there

  15. rotide

    The judge heard all the facts of the case and gave this sentance. Yes, it seems low but I have no idea what the average is for these crimes and im betting 90% of the people commenting here have no idea either.

    Unfortunately with this sort of case it becomes impossible to have any sort of logical dispassionate discussion before hysteria takes over. A good example is in the above article , why is he being compared to Gibney? They clearly committed different sex abuse crimes. Will we be comparing people convicted of manslaughter with serial killers (and by manslaughter, I’m not talking about accidental death )

    Anyway, I look forward to the accusations of god knows what that will be throw my way on the back of this.

        1. Mary Lambe

          I think the fact you answered proves my point
          You seem to take a perverse delight in drawing negative attention to yourself with reactionary arguments

          1. rotide

            I think the fact you asked me a ‘serious question’, your words, and then took my giving you a genuine answer as some sort of moral victory tells me everything I need to know about you.

          2. Gimme Shelter

            I think she was quite perceptive.

            I’ve only been here posting about two weeks and I had come to the exact same conclusion.

      1. Gimme Shelter

        Why? Maybe he realises now what a terrible mistake it was.

        I wish everyone was as perfect as you clearly are.

  16. Lilly

    Listening to the news this evening, I was struck by Ibrahim Hallawa spending 4 years in some hellhole prison for taking part in a peaceful protest and this excuse-for-a-man getting just two and a half years for sexually abusing a child.

    And as for Karen O’Connor’s highly insensitive comments, they really don’t say much for her judgment.

    1. martco

      speaking of the news this evening I’ve just sat thru a full volley of cringe on the main C4 news…Jon Snow interviewing Helen McEntee & separately (a like nothing ever happened) Bertie Ahern for some more brexity forecasting


  17. guy bague

    3-2-1 … out come Irish Times “didn’t err in law/”uniquely qualified” apologists along with silence from their sports correspondents. Expect the Donal OG Cusack “bravery” BS to start too. Out twice. Wow. The second by your own misplaced loyalty to a child abuser, forced out into he public and admitted late. Such cynicism.

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