Northern Ireland news

West Belfast man sexually abused by paedophile school principal to receive £50,000 in damages

The High Court in Belfast

A west Belfast man who claims he was sexually abused by a paedophile school principal is to receive £50,000 in damages, the High Court heard.

The payout forms part of a settlement reached in his legal action for the alleged assaults perpetrated by Michael Mulgrew.

The 43-year-old plaintiff, who is not being named, sued over his treatment while a pupil at St Gall's Primary School in the west of the city.

He claimed that Mulgrew abused him on two occasions in a cleaner's store when he was aged seven or eight.

Proceedings were issued against the Education Authority, the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools and the Department of Education.

The case involved claims of negligence and a failure to safeguard him from Mulgrew, who has since died.

In court counsel for the plaintiff, Patrick Lyttle QC, announced the action has been settled in the sum of £50,000 damages.

The defendants are also to pay his legal costs under the terms of the resolution, which involve no admissions of liability.

With St Gall's no longer in existence, a further claim against the school's board of governors was stayed.

Mulgrew served at least two prison sentences for sexual offences against young children.

The disgraced headmaster was convicted of indecent assault and gross indecency towards pupils at the school during the 1980s.

In the legal action it was claimed that the plaintiff was abused after being sent to him for being incontinent.

Outside court the man's solicitor, Owen Beattie of KRW Law said: "Almost forty years on our client still suffers the trauma of the abuse he endured. Today's settlement is welcome vindication for him."

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