Northern Ireland

Abuse inquiry: Former boy's home worker denies raping boy

A lawyer told the inquiry of a claim that the boy was raped in the back of a van
Image caption A lawyer told the inquiry of a claim that the boy was raped in the back of a van

A former worker at Rubane House boys' care home in County Down has denied raping a boy and threatening to throw him off Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge.

The man, who is now elderly, has been giving evidence to the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry.

Counsel to the inquiry said a former resident had alleged "you raped him in the back of a van".

Replying to this, and a claim that he took the boy to his home, the former lay worker said: "I never abused him."

The lawyer said: "You threatened him on the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge that you would throw him over if he ever told anyone."

Another former teacher at the school described allegations of physical abuse against him as, "most disturbing, simply ridiculous and beyond comprehension".

Background

The HIA inquiry was set up in 2013 to investigate child abuse in residential institutions in Northern Ireland over a 73-year period, up to 1995.

A total of 13 Northern Ireland institutions are being investigated.

The inquiry is currently examining alleged abuse at Rubane.

About 200 former residents have made allegations of abuse.

A total of 55 former residents have come forward to the inquiry to allege that they were physically or sexually abused.

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