Victim claims Ferry was working at Scoil Colmchille until the day he was arrested

It’s worth listening to this studio interview with the young man, Derek Mulligan, who has spoken out about the sustained abuse he suffered as a young man in Derrybeg, Gaoth Dobhair.

It’s distressing, not least the details of what happened and where it left him, and the suidical state it pushed him into. But the detail worth noting here is that Mulligan is adamant that his abuser, Michael Ferry, was working at the Ard Scoil Mhuire right up to the day he was arrested.

Considering the management of the College is now saying he never worked alone, there is a case to answer as to whether they knew he was a risk to children but left him in the building unsupervised for a long period of the year…

, , , ,

  • Rory Carr

    Given that there are now allegations that other men were involved along with Ferry in an abusive ‘ring’ and the inference drawn in the programme that these may have included local men, it would seem to me that it would be in the best interests of all involved with the management of the college to be absolutely transparent as to precisely the arrangements that were in place with Ferry most especially given that there is very strong resistance to accepting what they have said to date.

    “Why deny something that is actually out there, that everbody’s going to find out? ” asks Derek Mulligan of the management’s denial of their employment of Ferry whom Mulligan claims was actually involved in teaching (my emphasis) a number of his contemporaries.

    Why indeed? While it might well have been the practice previously to (as young Mulligan remarks) “brush things under the carpet” there will be no hiding this under any carpet now. Best to have a clean sweep and we could start with management coming clean.

  • Would this be the same Derek Mulligan by any chance – from the Donegal Democrat on 19 October 2010?

    Judge Dubs Gweedore Man’s Claims against the Gardai ‘a Fairytale’

    “A Gweedore man who alleged he was taunted and choked unconscious by gardaí following his arrest for public order offences was told his defence was “a fairytale of gigantium proportions” by a District Court Judge.

    “Letterkenny District Court heard Derek Mulligan of Magheraclogher, was arrested for being intoxicated, failing to comply with direction of the Garda and causing a breach of the peace, offensive conduct and giving a false name at High Road Letterkenny on April 8.

    “He was also charged with failing to appear in court on another charge on December 8, 2009.

    “Evidence was heard that Mulligan had his clothes removed while in garda custody and has since lodged a complaint to the Garda Ombudsman over his alleged treatment while in custody.

    “23-year-old Mulligan has three previous public order convictions.

    “Garda Thomas Regan said while on patrol at 3.17am he observed a “physical altercation” between a number of youths outside the Milan nightclub. He intervened and ordered them to leave the scene but Mulligan refused and became aggressive towards him.

    “He directed him again and Mulligan told him that he would “be sorry” and that he was the son of a garda and began to demand the direction in Irish. He directed him in Gaelige to leave but he still refused.” etc etc

  • wee buns

    And your point is……….?

  • Alias

    “And your point is……?”

    That he has made a malicious allegation of serious wrongdoing against an authority figure that, in the opinion of a District Court Judge, amounted to no more “a fairytale of gigantium proportions” and which could have, if regarded by the judge as having any merit, led to conviction, dismissal, and even imprisonment for the person against whom he made the false allegation?

    Given that he has a history of lying and of making false allegations, that means that what he now alleges should be subject to rigorous verification rather than, as has been lamentably the case, accepted at face value by the public.

  • Rory Carr

    “…what he now alleges should be subject to rigorous verification…”

    Which is why I have suggested above that “it would be in the best interests of all involved with the management of the college to be absolutely transparent as to precisely the arrangements that were in place with Ferry most especially given that there is very strong resistance to accepting what they have said to date.”

    However it is not the allegation of Mr Mulligan alone that might be of concern to the management as this report of 20th July from The Independent suggests:

    Mr Shatter said he had been informed by the Garda Commissioner that records showed on October 16, 2002, that the then health board were informed by the gardai, in accordance with the Children First guidelines, of Ferry’s conviction and of where he was believed to be working.

    “The minister said it was the “clear recollection of gardai” that the owner of the school was in court for the criminal proceedings.

    In addition, a garda subsequently spoke to the owner of the school about the conviction and expressed his concerns about Ferry continuing to work there. Mr Shatter said: “This makes it all the more necessary for those who chose to continue the employment of this person to explain themselves.”

    – reporters and Greg Harkin

  • I also find the following story curious – in the Irish Independent on 20 July:

    I sat there every night and if any boy came within a yard of the place, I chased them away’

    Abuse victim warned boys about the ‘devil’, writes Greg Harkin

    SEX abuse victim Derek Mulligan knew what happened to young boys who would dare to enter the old school in Derrybeg, Co Donegal, where he suffered so much at the hands of caretaker Michael Ferry. So, after years of abuse, he returned to Ardscoil Mhuire every evening to stand guard — and to warn other boys to stay away from the “devil” who abused him. …….

    Between 2002 and 2010, Derek took it upon himself to protect other boys. Pointing to a small wall where he sat every evening, Derek revealed: “I sat there. I sat there every night I could and if any boy came within a yard of the place, I chased them away.

    “I did what I could. I knew Ferry was inside. He was sleeping in the place on a blow-up mattress.” …..

    Did anyone else see Mr. Mulligan sitting there over a period of 8 years?

  • The link to the Irish Independent story is

    What this reminds me of are stories about Br Joseph O’Connor, a former head of the Artane Boys Band, against whom allegations were made long after his death. One guy said that when Brother Joseph was dying in the Mater Hospital, he walked up and down in front of the hospital and then went into the mortuary and lifted the sheet off his body to make sure he was dead. However Brother Joseph O’Connor did NOT die in the Mater Hospital!

    It should be possible to verify (or otherwise) the story about Derek Mulligan sitting outside the old school building on a nightly basis for years.

  • wee buns

    From the article on Mulligan’s trial for drunken behaviour quoting Judge Sean Hughes:

    He told the solicitor: “Not a scintilla do I believe coming out of your client’s mouth”.
    Judge Hughes read out a letter from the defendant’s doctor asking for “sympathetic consideration” based on issues the defendant had experienced during his lifetime. Judge Hughes commented: “This is an appalling letter for a doctor to write to a Judge.”

    Is the above statement not a bit weird? Why would a judge receive a letter from a doctor with anything less than respectful regard for his profession….I’m not sure.

    Also, in a different case, Judge Huhges ordered a man to climb Croagh Patrick as a punishment for verbal abuse to a Mayo garda.

    The court heard that the defendant, Joseph McElwee (38) called Garda Nicholas Freyne,…..a ‘Mayo w****r’ and said ‘f*** off home to Mayo’, continuing his abuse for a total of 10 minutes according to the Mayo garda’s evidence.

    ‘’After hearing the evidence Judge Hughes went on to ask the defendant if he had actually ever visited his native Mayo.
    “I want you to come back in a month’s time with evidence that you did the four stations of Croagh Patrick, and said a few prayers.’’

  • Mick Fealty

    Fascinating Wee buns!

  • The Irish Times for Thursday 21 July has a headline “Victim Claims School Directors Telling Lies”.

    The article by Jamie Smyth goes on :

    SEX ABUSE victim Derek Mulligan has accused the directors of Coláiste Chomcille school of telling lies about their decision to allow convicted child sex abuser Michael Ferry, to work at the Irish language summer school. He has also alleged Ferry may have been part of a wider paedophile ring operating in the Donegal area that abused children.

    Mr Mulligan, who was abused as a child by Ferry, said yesterday every one of the abuse victims were sick to the stomach by the statement issued by the school yesterday. “Stop telling us lies and stop telling us the place was unoccupied for nine months when you know it wasn’t”, he told RTÉ News at One. ……etc

    The Irish Times had several stories on the case during the week but none seems to quote Mr. Mulligan’s claim that he sat outside the school almost every evening for 8 years to protect other boys and chase them away. Yet the Independent had that story the day before the Times article about the “School Directors Telling Lies”. Do the Times people not think the claim is significant or that it throws any light on the credibility of Derek Mulligan in relation to his allegations against the school directors?