Eleven people, five men and six women, are to go on trial at the Central Criminal Court facing up to 220 charges, as part of a two-year-long garda investigation into child sexual abuse and sexual exploitation.

The 11 accused are aged from their 30s to their 70s.

All are facing charges of sexual assault and sexual exploitation against seven young victims. A number of the accused are also facing charges of rape, child cruelty and neglect.

At a district court sitting today all 11 were served with books of evidence in the case and sent forward for trial to the current sitting of the Central Criminal Court.

The 11 were granted free legal aid to cover the cost of their solicitors and two legal counsel for the duration of their trials.

They were remanded on bail with strict conditions attached including that they reside at named addresses and be contactable at all times by mobile phone with the gardaí.

They were also ordered to have no contact whatsoever, including through social media or by a third-party, with the victims in the case.

Prohibitive reporting restrictions were also ordered by the judge including identifying any location or townland connected with the case, or the location of the court hearing in order to protect the identity of the victims.