Man sentenced to 12 years for rape at gaming convention –

A man who tied up and raped a woman in a hotel meeting room during a gaming convention in Dublin two years ago has been sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Keith Hearne, 28, from Allenton Drive, Tallaght in Dublin, threatened to use a knife on his victim, 25-year-old Dominique Meehan, and also told her he could break her neck as he subjected her to an “extremely violent” series of sexual attacks.

Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy said the case was of the utmost seriousness. 

He said it had a very serious series of adverse impacts on Ms Meehan and had impinged on her daily life in an enormously significant manner.

The judge said the only mitigating factor he could take into account was Hearne’s plea of guilty.

However he said he would only give a modest reduction to the sentence as Hearne had been caught, committing the offences.

The sentence hearing heard Hearne bound Ms Meehan’s hands with his tie and raped her in a room that was being used as part of a gaming convention at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown in Dublin on 4 July 2015.

She was volunteering at the convention and was preparing a presentation in a meeting room.

Hearne entered the room, locked the door and rugby tackled her to the ground before tying her hands behind her back and raping her.

The attack stopped when another conference worker heard her screams and entered the room with a key card.

Hearne was arrested and his backpack, containing a knife, handcuffs, condoms, a mask and other “sadomasochistic” items, was found at the scene.

The court heard Hearne had mental health issues.

But Mr Justice McCarthy said he was of sound mind at the time of the attack and his culpability for the offences was not diminished by his mental

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