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Former Terenure college teacher and rugby coach pleads guilty to two abuse offences
Coleman Legal LLP
January 11, 2023
John McClean, former teacher and rugby coach at Terenure College, pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting two students between 1981 and 1987. He faces 45 more allegations.

John McClean pleads guilty to sexual assault at Terenure College

John McClean, a former teacher and rugby coach at Terenure College, appeared at the Circuit Criminal Court in Dublin’s CCJ this morning and pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting two former students.

The accused first appeared in the Dublin District Court in October 2022 after he was charged with 49 counts of indecent assault of several former students at Terenure College. McClean made no reply to the charges in that instance. The instances heard in Court this morning occurred between September 1981 and June 1987.

McClean has 45 more allegations against him, which relate to another 20 victims. These allegations are expected to be put before the 76-year-old abuser next month when he will appear again before the Circuit Criminal Court for the sentencing of the two counts of assault heard today.

22 victim impact statements are to be used as evidence during sentencing, and at today’s hearing, Judge Martin Nolan remanded the retired school teacher in custody, where he will be held until sentencing on February 23rd.

He was an English teacher and school rugby coach at Terenure College from 1966 to 1996. It is understood that McClean used these positions to gain access to the young victims, with the abuse and molestation taking place in his office, empty classrooms, and under the guise of examining sporting injuries or during costume fittings for school plays.

McClean became the director of rugby at UCD in the 1990s, a position he held until 2011. Allegations first surfaced in the media against McClean in early 2018, leading to his arrest last August in his hometown of Terenure. The case was up for mention today, with McClean pleading guilty to two counts of indecent assault against two victims.

One boy was abused by McClean over six years, from September 1981 to June 1987, and the second victim was abused between September 1981 and June 1983.

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Clodagh Magennis

Clodagh Magennis

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