Carey "Held up Inquiry into Priest for 20 Years': Former Archbishop of Canterbury "Failed to Pass Allegations of Abuse to Police after Receiving a Complaint in 1992"
By Arthur Martin
March 17, 2016
Former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey delayed a child abuse investigation for more than 20 years by failing to pass allegations to police, an inquiry heard yesterday.
Lord Carey received a complaint from a young man in 1992 about abuse he had suffered at the hands of then bishop Peter Ball.
But the Archbishop, who retired in 2002, did not pass on the accusations, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse was told.
In 1993 Ball was cautioned for gross indecency and returned to work two years later in a different diocese. He was eventually jailed for 32 months last October after admitting abuse of 18 teenagers and young men.
|Former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey has been accused of delaying a child abuse investigation|
Richard Scorer, representing a string of Ball’s victims at the inquiry, said yesterday: ‘[The victim] can tell the inquiry about a very detailed complaint he made to Archbishop George Carey in 1992, reporting Peter Ball’s behaviour years previously.
‘We believe that the Archbishop of Canterbury failed to pass that information on to the police and is one reason, we believe, a proper investigation of Peter Ball’s behaviour and abuse was delayed by over 20 years.’
It comes three weeks after the Mail published claims made in secret documents that said the Church of England knew Ball was a serial abuser.
The report, compiled at the time by a private detective for Ball’s legal team, warned senior Church figures that Ball had been ‘abusing not only his office but many young men’ and had confessed to his behaviour.
The papers showed a police officer discussed with Ball’s lawyers ‘the need to prevent a scandal, especially as Peter was a frequent visitor to Sandringham and is friendly with Prince Charles’.
Ball, now 84, was arrested in 1992 for allegedly molesting novice monk Neil Todd. Establishment figures including two archbishops, Tory MPs and a senior judge mounted a campaign to protect him, claiming it was ‘inconceivable’ he could have committed the offences.
|Former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball, now 84, was arrested in 1992 for allegedly molesting a novice monk|
Ball received a caution after admitting one count of gross indecency. Detectives dropped investigations into other victims’ cases.
But his trial last year heard that, while Bishop of Lewes, Ball hand-picked 18 vulnerable victims to commit acts of ‘debasement’ in the name of religion, such as praying naked and encouraging them to submit to beatings.
Despite a number of complaints, he become Bishop of Gloucester and even continued to work as a priest in Truro after he accepted the caution.
Lord Carey has previously denied covering up Ball’s crimes. He said after Ball was jailed: ‘I greatly regret … we dealt inadequately with Peter Ball’s victims and gave too much credence to his protestations. Allegations by some that my actions amounted to a cover-up or collusion with the abuser are wrong.’