A traditional Irish musician whose famous family has played to audiences around the world was yesterday accused of putting on a performance whilst being cross-examined about sexual abuse charges.
Francis McPeake spent a second day in the witness box at Belfast Crown Court, where he again denied he engaged in sexual activity with a 15-year-old schoolgirl.
The 72-year-old musician, formerly of Eliza Street Close in the Markets area of Belfast, was questioned about the nature of his relationship with the teenager.
She claimed they were in a sexual relationship from June 2009 to May 2010, while McPeake maintains he knew her through music and that he talked and listened to her when she was having problems at home and at school.
McPeake was questioned about his sexual capabilities after he received treatment for prostate cancer in 2004,
Under cross-examination by Crown prosecutor Charles MacCreanor, McPeake initially told the court, “nothing works”.
The complainant, who is now 20, said McPeake’s sexual functioning was normal, to which McPeake replied: “That’s a lie.”
The pensioner said that after the cancer treatment, his sex life and libido totally changed but he started taking medication, including Viagra, to enable him and his wife to make love.
When asked by the Crown to explain why in September 2009 his sexual function was medically described as ‘normal’, McPeake questioned the medical evidence and said: “Those notes are wrong.”
When it was put to McPeake that the complainant “says that you engaged in sexual activity with her in a normal way”, the accused said he “never had any sexual contact” with her “at any time”.
As McPeake again denied and refuted the sexual allegations put to him by the Crown, Mr MacCreanor said: “You are just lying about your account.
“This is just a performance you are putting on.”
He replied: “I am not lying.”