The grave evil of pornography.

One of the most evil and heinous crimes ever committed in Ireland.
A few issues back I alluded to some of the details that were in the media concerning the trial for murder of two teenage boys of a fourteen year old girl, Ana Kriégel. The case was still before the courts at the time so I was constrained in what I could say concerning it. Since then the jury has reached its verdict, finding both boys guilty of her murder and one of seriously sexually assaulting  her, so I am now free to discuss it in more detail … especially the moral implications of the case and what it says about the state of our society.

The case is a shocking one for many reasons. Ana Kriégel was a particularly vulnerable young woman, so vulnerable that one would be forgiven for hoping that in this ‘woke’ age of ours when our young people are so vocal on issues such as consent, the environment, and particularly their claims of embracing and cherishing ‘difference’ in all its forms, that they would have taken someone like Ana to heart and seen her as someone to be extra protective of. Sadly they did not; instead she was the victim of severe bullying, especially the cowardly online form that is so common these days. And her killers, it is to be presumed, saw in her vulnerability an opportunity for playing out in real life the kind of fantasies that can only be described as evil.

Both boys were only thirteen when they conceived and carried out their crime of murder and sexual assault. The one known to the courts and the Irish public as Boy A knew that Ana liked him and considered him as someone she would like to go out with. He conspired with his friend, the one known as Boy B, to lure her to an abandoned house. There, as Boy B watched, he attacked her. Ana fought bravely, to preserve her chastity and her life; she injured him enough that he limped badly for some days later. But Boy A overpowered her. He tore her clothes from her body, sexually assaulted her, and then beat her to death. Both boys then left, leaving her naked body upon the floor, not even troubling to try and grant her some dignity in death by covering her.

A particularly chilling aspect of the case was how Boy A put together in advance of this crime what the prosecution described in court as a ‘murder kit’. This was a backpack containing items to help him better carry out his assault and murder. One of the more cold-blooded and calculating of the things included was a set of knee-pads: Boy A knew the place he intended to violently sexually assault Ana had a rough and broken floor and he brought the pads as protection to ensure that he did not suffer any injuries to his knees even as he carried out his  attack.

During their trial both boys pleaded innocent. Boy A denied ever having been to the house, claiming that he had last seen Ana in a local park. Boy B admitted luring her to the house, but denied that he knew what his friend intended to do to the girl. The jury, having considered the forensic evidence, CCTV footage showing the movements of the boys and their victim shortly before the attack, and other evidence discovered by the Gardaí during the course of their investigation, did not find their stories credible and convicted both of her murder, and Boy A of  sexually assaulting her. Their verdict was unanimous.

The vulnerability of the victim, the youth of the perpetrators, the level of premeditation involved, the brutality of the attack, and the callousness of the murderers in the aftermath of their crime all come together to make this one of the most shocking crimes I have ever encountered. Indeed, when these factors are taken into consideration it is hard not to wonder if this is not one of the most heinous crimes ever committed in this country.

What could have led what are essentially children to behave in such a manner?
Well, as noted in my previous article, both were involved in a some kind of a satanic cult. Both claimed that it was not intended to be taken seriously as such, that it was really only a joke. Nonetheless many who have dabbled in the occult thinking it was only a bit of foolery have found to their cost that these things are only too real and the devil is only too ready, willing and able to take advantage of the openings such behaviour affords to him to take a dangerous hold over their lives. It is also to be noted that one of the rules of the cult, as written down in a notebook by one of the murderers themselves, was ‘no talking about God or Jesus, only satan’. In the face of the demonic the only protection is the one true God of the Christian faith; and these boys had wilfully and deliberately rejected him.

Another possible reason – and perhaps ‘possible’ is not a strong enough term – is information that was uncovered by the investigating gardaí but not put before the jury and kept out of the public domain until after the boys were convicted; and that is the staggering amount of pornography that was found on the phone of one of the boys. Literally thousands of images were found; and while all such material is deviant, a great deal of what was found in this case was extreme even within the parameters of this seedy world. Of particular note was the fact that much material depicting sexual violence was found.

I was not surprised that pornography was involved in some way in this case. It was my ‘gut instinct’ once the age of her attackers were known that such filth would be a part of this story. Indeed, I was surprised that it was not mentioned during the trial itself. The judge, however, ruled that the material would be prejudicial to the boys receiving a fair trial; and, as it turns out, it was not required in order to secure a conviction. But knowing now that it was involved, and the kind that it was, it is difficult not to wonder whether the boys had decided to live out in real life what they had seen so often on screens, with Boy A being the one who carried out the violent acts, and Boy B being his enabler who was allowed to witness the sadistic events as they unfolded.

The brutal assault upon Ana Kriégel followed by her callous murder, if nothing else, serves to highlight a dangerous and widespread blight in our society – the ready availability and widespread use of pornography. Only a couple of generations ago one could not even legally purchase a magazine of the likes of Playboy in any shop in Ireland. Now even children have easy access twenty four hours a day seven days a week to the kind of material that would have gotten one of those shabby little shops that existed in the less salubrious parts of the London’s West End closed down and the operators jailed. In modern Ireland, as well as throughout the Western World, we allow children to carry devices that permits them to witness the kind of acts that would cause a hardened prostitute to blush.

This should both shock and sicken us. No responsible parent would dream of having a stack of pornographic DVDs or magazines in their living where their under-age children could see them; and if they did, they would be had up for child abuse – and rightly so. But they allow them access to the most graphic filth available by way of their mobile phones … devices which they no doubt not only paid for, but continue to put credit on for them month by month.

Action must be taken to put a stop to this.
From a secular point of view, it is well documented that pornography warps the user’s understanding of sexuality. It is, to put it bluntly, dangerous and damaging to those who use it. And society as a whole suffers greatly when those among it are warped in this way; and we are not talking about a few but huge numbers of an entire generation. From a moral point of view it is worse. Few who use it will commit crimes as terrible as the boys in this case; but all who use it engage in mortal sin, thereby putting their souls at risk.

Parents must take action; but given that it only takes one child in a group who has easy access to a device to undermine their efforts, society must also act. Sadly, we can expect little from our government. Legislation has been promised; but why should we trust a government that boasts the legalisation of same-sex marriage, the introduction of abortion on demand paid for by the state, and even easier access to divorce among the great ‘achievements’ of its term in office, to deliver?

While we wait and see, the sewer that is the internet remains open. What can parents do? First, they must begin work at once to instil a sense of Catholic morality in their children so that they will understand how wrong it is to view pornography. They must also do something about their children’s mobile devices, whether it be filters or confiscating them entirely, to ensure that they are not occasions of sin to their children. They must also put pressure on schools that claim to be Catholic to provide Catholic teaching on matters relating to sexual morality. The nonsense that sex education must be ‘objective’ must be fought at every turn. Objective here is simply a code word for being in tune with secular ideology – which presents as good or morally neutral that which is both harmful and gravely wrong.

Parents need our prayers at this time, as well as help putting pressure on our elected leaders to reverse the tide of filth that has already engulfed so many of our children and threatens so many more. We must also pray for our children that they will have the strength and courage to resist the many temptations our fallen society places before them. And prayers are especially needed for the two boys in this case, that they will repent of the sins they have committed; for their parents and the parents of their victim; and for the soul of Ana. May she rest in peace.