Donegal priest wants to being failed appeal to supreme court

The Court of Criminal Appeal is expected to rule next week if a Co Donegal priest can have his appeal against his conviction for raping a teenage parishioner in a church sacristy more than 20 years ago determined by the Supreme Court.

In the appeal, 49 year old Fr Daniel Doherty of Carrigart argued that certain evidence should not have been put before the jury was it was highly prejudicial to his defence. He also argued the trial judge's charge to the jury at his trial in the Central Criminal Court was flawed.

Daniel Doherty has submitted that his case has raises a number of points of law, including issues surrounding the admissibility of statements, whether a judge has a duty to intervene in a criminal trial when it appears inadmissible material is being introduced, and whether lawyers have a duty to tender only evidence that satisfies the legal criteria for admissibility.

The Court of Criminal Appeal said it would give its decision early next week.

Earlier this year the CCA dismissed Doherty's appeal against his conviction on four charges, two of rape and two of indecent assault. In 2006, he was found guilty at the Central Criminal Court in 2006 of twice raping the then 13-year-old girl in the sacristy on dates in 1985 and of indecently assaulting her in the parochial house in 1985 and in his car on a date in December 1984.

Doherty received a seven-year prison sentence, and was certified to be registered as a sex offender.