Sitting in a darkened room peering out of the window in a rural village outside Enniskillen, Michael (not his real name) cuts a lonely figure. In his early 20s he was a successful businessman who rented videos to the public and was an active member of the community with an ever-growing social circle and a zest for life and a love of sport.
That was until one night in early 1998 when his world collapsed around him after he unwittingly became the latest victim of sexual predator David Sullivan who drugged him, raped him and got away with it.
Over 20 years later and Michael, now 48, hasn’t been the same since. He suffers from serious mental health issues, needs around the clock care and has recently been diagnosed with schizophrenia. 
His sister Jackie (not her real name) has waited two decades to tell her family’s story and in a moving interview with The Impartial Reporter this week she has revealed how evil Sullivan:
•    Drugged and sexually abused her brother in his Enniskillen flat 
•    Allowed Michael’s van to be used to - according to police at the time - ‘ferry drugs’ across the Border 
•    Got away with raping Michael after police advised his family not to pursue their complaint
•    Ended up murdered and buried in a bog not long after attacking the young businessman 
Michael is the second of Sullivan’s victims to speak out to this newspaper via his sister Jackie following a surge in historical sex abuse cases emerging in Fermanagh. More victims’ stories will be published in this newspaper in the coming weeks.
“I never thought that I would ever get to tell Michael’s story publicly; what happened to him and the impact that it has had on him and my family for many years,” explained Jackie.
“Michael had his own business renting out videos in the community, a business that he had worked in for many years as an employee before he bought the business over. He travelled many different routes but would end up going to the same homes at least twice a week.”
Shortly before Sullivan’s brutal murder Michael had visited the self-contained flat he lived in at least twice a week with video rentals, a routine that the former Ulster Bus driver was aware of. He first met Michael at the youth club he managed at the Duke of Westminster High School in Ballinamallard some years previously.
“The night that Michael called at Sullivan’s house he was aware that he would be calling and was probably waiting. He had everything planned in terms of what was going to happen.
“Michael called at his door asking him if he would like any video tapes,” she said.
It is believed there were other men in the house when Michael arrived [names supplied].
According to her brother, Sullivan asked him if he would like a drink of alcohol. Michael informed him that he didn’t drink. Sullivan then offered him a glass of milk. He thought nothing of it and accepted the glass of milk,” she explained. 
“When Michael drank the milk, he felt very funny after it and blanked out.”
As Michael lay asleep in Sullivan’s flat he was sexually abused. 
Meanwhile his distraught mother was fearing the worst after he hadn’t returned home. 
“Mum would have been worried as Michael would have had money in the van, and often was afraid for his safety as he could have been a target for a robbery.
“When Michael was almost an hour late, my mother rang the police. She explained the route that he would have taken. 
“A police officer [name supplied]phoned my dad sometime later and informed him that Michael’s van was spotted going across an army check point on the Border with two individuals inside.
“He warned my family that the outcome of this may not be good. The police did not wish to push the case telling my dad to drop it and not to pursue.”
“They said they were aware of who was involved and that they should not pursue this any further.
“As my family were in business they said we would have been an easy target. My family were furious, it was bad enough what happened to Michael but nobody was going to be prosecuted.”
Police informed the family of their belief that Michael’s dark blue van was used to transport drugs across the Border.
“We were told later that the van may have been used to transport drugs. The van was brought back to Sullivan’s house,” said Jackie. 
Michael returned home the next day. When we spoke to him he was “not in a good state of mind” having been drugged the night before.
“Whatever Sullivan used to knock him out had a huge impact on him. He was white in colour and looked lost.”
At the time Jackie knew something awful had happened in Sullivan’s flat. 
“We know Michael was sexually abused by Sullivan given what we soon learned,” she said, declining to detail precisely the level of trauma that he suffered that night.  
“The mental effects of what happened has destroyed his life then and will for the rest of his life,” she said. “If police had acted on this at the time they would have had to bring David Sullivan in as he was still alive at this stage and they could have  found out what he was involved in or stopped him from abusing again.”
A short time later Sullivan went missing having been murdered and buried in a bog near Belcoo, a grim discovery that would not be made for another 15 months.
“None of us have seen any justice for what happened to Michael.
“My family have had to watch Michael’s outbursts as a result of his mental health and watch him sleep most of the day whilst on medication. He literally has no life beyond the four walls of his home,” she said.
Jackie believes there have been “so many failings” by police in relation to the litany of abuse Sullivan got away with for several years. She only has to look at her own brother. 
“It is heart breaking to watch Michael who was once so outgoing; a great sports person, who played cricket, football, went swimming and running, who now sits in a chair most of the day. 
“He has been suffering physically and mentally for over 20 years and will suffer for the rest of his life, that is the sentence that he has received for what he has endured.”
The family has told this newspaper that they will meet with senior police to discuss Michael’s cases and what they believe were significant failures at the time.
“I am speaking out to tell Michael’s story to help other victims seek help in their fight for justice,” said Jackie.

CONTACT US Do you have information relating to the litany of abuse carried out by David Sullivan or other men and women in Fermanagh? If, like ‘Jackie’, you feel strong enough to share your story or information about sex abuse in Fermanagh e-mail or phone us on 028 66 32 44 22. You can also write to this newspaper by sending a letter to:

Rodney Edwards 

The Impartial Reporter

8 - 10 East Bridge Street


BT74 7BT

All conversations or correspondence will be treated in the strictest of confidence.


Nexus NI offers counselling and support. For further information visit or to make an appointment contact the Enniskillen office on 028 66 32 0046. The 24 Hour Domestic and Sexual Violence Helpline can be contacted on 0800 917 1414 The Rowan, a specialist regional Centre for victims of sexual violence and abuse that offers support and a range of medical services. Free phone helpline is 0800 399 4424 or for more information visit


To report allegations of child sex abuse in Fermanagh phone the Police Service of Northern on 101. Your details will be recorded by specially trained staff and someone will return your call.