The bestselling book, 'Kathy's Story (published in 2005)', is written by Kathy O'Beirne who says she was in a number of Magdalene homes where she was put to work in their laundries. The books describes an abusive childhood - mainly at the hands of her late father, states that she was raped while in a Magdalene home and had a child who died at the age of 10.
However, the four religious orders that ran the former homes all say they have no record of Ms O'Beirne having been one of their residents. Ms O'Beirne does not say in her book which homes she was present in, or which religious orders ran them. Ms O'Beirne also said that two clerics have paid her out-of-court settlements because of sexual abuse she says she suffered from them. Seven of her brothers and sisters gave a press conference to state that she had never been in a Magdalene home, that her allegations against her father were false and that she never had a child.
In 2007 Hermann Kelly, former editor of the Irish Catholic published a book "Kathy's Real Story" based lagely on the testimony of O'Beirne's brothers and sisters, that comprehensively demolished her allegations. The second part of the book deals with the general topic of false allegations of child abuse, including claims that the Christian Bothers were responsible for killing children in their care.
In 2009, Hermann Kelly and Florence Horsman-Hogan managed to prevent the publication of a follow up to Ms O'Beirne's initial bestseller by again publicising some of the book's obvious falsehoods in the media and by bringing them to the attention of the publisher. Part of the reason for their success is that Ms. O'Beirne operated by herself, not joining any of the dozen or so "victims'" organisations and indeed antagonising other alleged victims. She had also made the mistake of targetting the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity who referred her claims to the Minister for Justice and requested a Garda investigation. This found no evidence to support her allegations.