Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

McKenna to be quizzed over new allegations of abuse

More alleged victims have come forward in the case of a former Crossmaglen man accused of a litany of sexual abuse offences against young boys.

Thomas McKenna (59) appeared via videolink at Newry Magistrates Court on Wednesday where the prosecution told the court that there have been a number of fresh allegations made against the retired postman and former treasurer of Crossmaglen Rangers GFC.

McKenna, whose address was given in court as c/o Maghaberry Prison, is presently facing a total of 27 charges including sexual assault and indecent assault against 12 victims.  The allegations span a period of almost 30 years.

He is charged with ten offences against three males including, five counts of sexual assault and three counts of indecent assault.

On a second indictment, he faces 17 charges alleged to have been committed between 1988 and his arrest in August last year.  They include two gross indecency offences, one of which was against a child.

He is also charged with sexual assault, voyeurism and eight counts of indecent assault, along with making and possessing indecent photographs of children.

As well as further allegations that he interfered with mail during his time of employment as a postman.

Previous court hearings have been told that the “serious and complex investigation” involves alleged victims who claim McKenna either sexually abused them or took photos and videos of them without their permission.

Police searches led to the recovery of devices said to contain 43,000 still images and 8,000 short video clips – some allegedly taken covertly.

District Judge Eamon King acceded to a request for McKenna to attend the court later this month when police will ask for him to be released into police custody for questioning.  He remanded him back into custody and ordered him to be produced to court on 20th November.