Below is the full text of the article in the Irish edition of London’s Sunday Times. It is reprinted with permission. © Times Newspapers Limited 2015
Alleged abuser Gibney ‘s green card queried
By Justine McCarthy
1 March 2015
AN AMERICAN journalist investigating sexual abuse in swimming is seeking to obtain the Department of Homeland Security’s immigration file on George Gibney, a former Irish national swim coach.
Irvin Muchnick’s application, under America’s Freedom of Information Act, is being assisted by Dianne Feinstein, an influential Californian senator. A spokesman for Feinstein said her office is monitoring the application’s progress. It is 127th in line for consideration by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Gibney left Ireland in 1994 after the Supreme Court ruled he could not adequately defend himself against charges of sexually abusing 17 under-age swimmers because too much time had elapsed since the alleged events. They dated from the 1960s to 1991.
Muchnick has spent three years investigating sexual abuse of swimmers in America where more than 100 coaches have either been jailed or banned for life.
He wants to know who sponsored Gibney’s temporary American visa application and how the Irishman obtained a permanent residence green card after facing criminal charges in Ireland.
Gibney has been living in Florida for the past decade, having lived in Colorado, Utah and California when he moved to America.
He has worked for a swimming club, a hotel, an airline, a food processing company, and an accountancy firm. The latter sacked Gibney in September 2000 after learning about the criminal charges against him in Ireland.
Concussion Inc, Muchnick’s news website, has chronicled how Gibney arrived in America, via Scotland, after the Supreme Court ruling.
Under the headline, “Why is George Gibney — No 1 paedophile in global sports — living in Florida?”, the site reports that the Irishman travelled at one stage from the US to Peru with a Catholic priest on a medical mission.
Gibney, it said, described himself as the “chairman” of the International Peru Eye Clinic.
The site also quoted a statement from the Wheat Ridge police department in Colorado confirming thatGibney had been on the advisory board for the Department of Youth Corrections at the Metropolitan State College Lab School.
Muchnick said: “The reporting at Concussion Inc establishes that it is reasonable to speculate that the American Swimming Coaches Association might have been involved in sponsoring Gibney’s visa and green card. This is what motivates our FoI request.”
Muchnick’s application comes after one of Gibney’s victims died tragically in Ireland last Christmas. The former swimmer, in her 40s, had reported the abuse to gardai about four years ago but nothing came of her complaint.
Maureen O’Sullivan, an Independent TD who knows another woman who was raped by Gibney, wants to have the garda investigation into Gibney reopened.
“Other people might come forward if they felt there was going to be a proper investigation,” O’Sullivan said. “What is happening in America now makes it more urgent that the case is reopened. The Irish authorities could look very vulnerable if they have not been seen to have done everything.”
The woman whom O’Sullivan knows made her rape complaint to gardai after Gibney left Ireland.
The DPP decided not to seek his extradition from America. When gardai informed the woman of the DPP’s decision, she attempted to kill herself.
CONCUSSION INC.’S SERIES SO FAR: