Victim Breaks down at Project Truth Inquiry
November 9, 2006
Cornwall — Albert Roy broke down in tears Wednesday as he remembered a day when he was a teenager and he came home to find the man who was sexually abusing him visiting his family.
"He was having dinner with my mom," Roy, tears running down his cheeks, told an inquiry probing the response to allegations of child sexual abuse in this eastern Ontario city.
"My mom made me go with him," he said.
Nelson Barque, a now-deceased probation officer, had been assigned to watch over Roy and ensure he followed court orders related to his conviction on charges of car theft.
Roy, 46, has told the inquiry he was just 16 years old when he was abused by Barque.
In 1995, the probation officer pleaded guilty to sex-related offences and received four months in jail.
In 1976, Roy got drunk, stole a car in Cornwall and took it on a joyride to Kingston. When the cops showed up at his door, Roy admitted to the crime and eventually received an 18-month probationary sentence.
Roy said he still can't get his mind around the fact the probation officer who was supposed to keep him on the straight and narrow, instead encouraged him to do things in contradiction of his probation order.
"He was my probation officer and he was feeding me alcohol," said Roy. "I wasn't supposed to have any alcohol."
Roy said he remembers listening in court to a pre-sentence report during Barque's sentencing hearing which suggested the probation officer had little if any memory of any inappropriate incidents involving the then-teenage boy.
Roy told the inquiry it was his own pre-sentence report which he believes led Barque and a second probation officer to target him as someone they could abuse.
"Both of these men used my pre-sentence report as a vehicle to abuse me," said Roy. "They knew about my family situation, about problems with my father. They knew I got nervous and agitated when yelled at, the problems I had with alcohol, problems at school — they used all of that to abuse me."
Roy says he was also abused by Ken Seguin, a probation officer who committed suicide in November 1993. Seguin was never criminally charged in relation to any of Roy's claims.
Roy said he specifically recalled an incident with Seguin where the probation officer allegedly suggested a location where the sexual abuse could take place.
"Ken gave me an indication he would have access to a church," said Roy, who had difficulty finishing his story.
Lawyers for a priest are expected to seek some sort of gag order on a man scheduled to testify at the inquiry in the near future.
Giuseppe Cipriano, an attorney representing Rev. Charles MacDonald, has told commission staff he intends to file a notice of motion relating to a Cornwall man who alleges he was sexually abused by the priest in the early 1970s.
Although publication bans have been used by previous courts on complainants related to charges laid against the priest, the man went public in 1995.
Commission counsel confirmed Wednesday that a motion will be heard on Tuesday, but it's unclear exactly what Cipriano will be seeking — a publication ban on either person's identity, a ban on evidence or a request to hear the matter in a closed session. Cipriano has until 5 p.m. Thursday to file the motion.
The priest was first charged with more than a dozen sex-related offences in 1996 relating to a number of incidents alleged to have occurred between 1967 and 1983.
In May 2002, a judge stayed the charges against the priest saying his right to a trial in a timely fashion had been infringed upon.
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