Al Porter has revealed he is planning to focus on his loved ones after a sex assault charge against him was dropped.
The comedian, who walked free from court on Wednesday, told a friend: “Over the last two years I’ve been working on myself. I have been spending time with my family.
“I’m receiving counselling and making sure this experience doesn’t break me. I am too young for that.
“Everything I’ve been doing –drinking less, counselling, trying to get grounded – has been so this doesn’t break me and ruin me for the rest of my life.”
The 26-year-old’s professional and personal life fell apart when he was accused of a sex attack in late 2016 at a venue in the capital.
But Dublin District Court heard this week the DPP was dropping the case against Al, who was charged under his real name Alan Kavanagh.
Following the hearing, the ex- Today FM and Blind Date host said: “For two long and very anxious years I have co-operated fully and respected the legal process, even before I knew the DPP made their decision to withdraw the charge, because I have always denied any wrongdoing whatsoever in this case.”
Yesterday, a clearly-relieved Al told a pal: “I have no immediate plans to get back into the public arena.
“I am trying to look after my well-being so this whole horrendous experience doesn’t break me entirely. I have a long life ahead.
“I’m doing what I’ve been doing for the past two years, looking after my own wellbeing with the help of family.
“I have to be ready for any future plans. I have to, first of all, make sure I’m OK.
“It’s taken a significant toll on my physical and mental health but I just need to put pieces of my life back together.
“I will take a bit of time out after a stressful two years and reassess my life in the new year. It’s a new decade.
“At Christmas, I will be doing exactly what I was doing last Christmas, which is doing the dinners for those down on their luck and homeless.
“I do it most of Christmas Day for a charity called Helping Hand in Tallaght.”
The court decision marked the end of two horrific years for the presenter. In a series of late-night messages at his lowest ebb, he revealed he had thought about suicide.
His career as an entertainer, TV and radio host came to a crashing halt as the allegations of sexual assault emerged in 2017.
He quit his lunchtime show on Today FM while TV3 – now Virgin Media One – axed a series of the hugely popular Blind Date.
That November, he also stepped aside from his role in the Olympia Theatre’s Christmas panto Polly And The Beanstalk to be replaced by Rory Cowan.
At the time, his profile was so high he had an agent in the US and he was preparing to record
a BBC Radio 4 comedy, due to air last year. However, it didn’t go ahead.
Regarding the revival of his career, he told his pal yesterday: “I’m not chomping at the bit to get back to work.
“I have no plans in the immediate future to get back to the public eye. I need to spend time with my family, continue with counselling and continue putting the pieces of my life back together to get some semblance of normality again.”
Al, from Springfield in Tallaght, West Dublin, appeared in court in October when he pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting the young man at a Dublin venue in 2016.
He could not be named at the time due to a gagging order made in August.
When the case was again called on Wednesday, the DPP’s lawyer Diarmuid Collins said: “The position is the prosecution is not proceeding any further.
“I am asking the court to strike out the charge before the court.”
The case was dismissed by Judge John Hughes.
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Source: Celebrity News Ireland