Dana's brother cleared of sex abuse charges

Friday 25 July 2014 21.39
John Brown had denied all claims of sex abuse and that his sister helped him cover up the allegations
John Brown had denied all claims of sex abuse and that his sister helped him cover up the allegations

A brother of former presidential candidate, MEP and Eurovision Song Contest winner Dana Rosemary Scallon has been cleared of indecently assaulting two young girls in the 1970s.

The jury acquitted, John Brown, 60, from Bracknell in Berkshire, of all five charges after deliberating for a day and a half.

Speaking afterwards, outside Harrow Crown Court, Mr Brown said he was delighted. 

He said he came in innocent and was always innocent. 

He said the jury had found his sister, Dana, did not lie, and he could leave without a stain on his character.  

He said it had been a horrendous time but he had been supported by his wife and children who had all suffered.   

He said they had both been accused of covering up and lying but the jury had found that was not the case. 

He said they told the truth, they did not have anything to cover up.

Mr Brown said the past three years had been a nightmare for him.

This afternoon, he wiped tears from his face as Judge Graham Arran told him he was free to go.

The two alleged victims, who are now 47 and 53, claimed they had been assaulted at various times and locations throughout the 1970s.

But the defence claimed Mr Brown had not been with the girls at the times of the alleged abuse.

Defence lawyers compared the prosecution case to an episode of Father Ted.    

The defence said the claims had been made up by the girls and their families, following a bitter feud over money and the ownership of a shared business interest.

The defence also said the allegations were an absurd and surreal attempt by the first alleged victim and her mother to support a defamation case they are taking against Dana, following statements she made on RTÉ and TV3 during the 2011 presidential election campaign.

Dana gave emotional testimony in her brother's defence at the beginning of this week.   

She strongly denied covering up the allegations for more than 30 years and said claims that she had described her brother as being "cured" after referring him to a priest were absolutely untrue.

She returned to court today and wept and hugged her brother after the jury of six men and six women acquitted him of all charges.