Gerry Adams gives evidence at brother Liam's trial for child sex abuse

 

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams gave evidence in a Belfast court today at the trial of his brother Liam, who is accused of child sex abuse.

He told the court that his brother had admitted sexually abusing his daughter, Aine, 40, who has waived her right to anonymity. 

The Sinn Fein president testified he had twice confronted his brother, who denies 10 charges of sexual abuse.

On the first occasion, during a meeting in Buncrana, County Donegal, in 1987, he denied the allegations made by Aine, according to Gerry Adams. But on the second occasion, during a long walk in the rain in Dundalk, County Louth, in 2000, Liam Adams allegedly admitted abuse had taken place, though he maintained it had happened only once.

He testified: “I had a long walk with Liam, we had a number of conversations. During the course of that he acknowledged that he had sexually abused Aine. He said it only happened the once. He was very upset.”

Under cross-examination, Gerry Adams denied a suggestion that the reason he had given a statement to police in 2009 was “to save his political skin” because he knew the question of his withholding information would become a matter of public debate.

Gerry Adams said that if he had been interested in saving his “political skin”, he would not have got involved in the process from the beginning.

Asked what his brother had admitted to him, the Sinn Fein president replied: “To the best of my recollection the terms that he used were that he had molested her, or that he had interfered with her, that he had sexually assaulted her.”

When it was put to Gerry Adams by defence counsel that no such admission had been made, he responded: “I don’t accept that but I understand it.”

He said he had been unaware for years of his niece’s claims that her father had raped her.

Earlier in the trial another daughter of Liam Adams, Sinead Rosbotham, gave evidence that their father admitted carrying out assaults.

The charges against Liam Adams 57, from west Belfast, include rape, incident assault and gross indecency between 1977 and 1983, when his daughter was aged between four and nine.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Arts and Entertainment
Books should be for everyone, says Els, 8. Publisher Scholastic now agrees
booksAn eight-year-old saw a pirate book was ‘for boys’ and took on the publishers
Life and Style
Mary Beard received abuse after speaking positively on 'Question Time' about immigrant workers: 'When people say ridiculous, untrue and hurtful things, then I think you should call them out'
tech
Life and Style
Most mail-order brides are thought to come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania
life
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Voices
Margaret Thatcher, with her director of publicity Sir Gordon Reece, who helped her and the Tory Party to victory in 1979
voicesThe subject is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for former PR man DJ Taylor
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions