Slapping two year old boy was ‘no big deal’

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A man who slapped a two-year-old boy on the face was given a two-month suspended jail sentence at East Tyrone Magistrates Court.

Thirty-one-year-old Sandro Aguiar De Siqueira, of Drumglass Way, Dungannon, admitted assaulting the child on August 15 last year.

District Judge John Meehan, who was shown photographs of the child, remarked that it was a single blow which had caused multiple bruises.

Mr Meehan said the defendant had arrogantly dismissed it as “not a big deal” and you would have been allowed to slap a child like that back in Portugal.

Mr Meehan said he categorically refused to believe the Portuguese authorities would treat this violence against a child any different from this country.

The court heard that the defendant’s former partner had left the boy in the care of the defendant when his father had called to pick him up around 4.30pm.

Counsel said the father noticed hand prints on the cheek of his son who had become quiet on getting into the car.

He said an examination of the boy found that his injuries, including bruising to the backs of the ears, were not accidental.

Continuing, the prosecutor said on September 4 the defendant was arrested and brought to Dungannon custody suite. He said the defendant had admitted giving the boy one slap but provided a no comment interview.

Pleading for leniency, a defence lawyer said De Siqueira had no criminal record and has an excellent work record.

He stressed there was no likelihood of anything like this happening again.