Sex abuse victim in plea to reform statute of limitations laws

The Australian

OCTOBER 28, 2015

Michael McKenna

A victim of child abuse at a prestigious Queensland private school, who is about to be the subject of royal commission hearings, has called for the nationwide ­implementation of laws to prevent churches and schools escaping legal liability for covered-up cases of pedophilia.

The victim, “John’’ — who does not wish to be named — has been fighting for changes to statute of limitations laws. The changes were recently endorsed by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse but only Victoria has adopted the reforms. The royal commission will begin public hearings in Brisbane next week.

Brisbane Grammar School and St Paul’s Anglican School are being investigated over their ­response to the abuse of scores of students by two pedophiles; Kevin “Skippy’’ Lynch, at both schools, and Gregory Knight at the Anglican school.

Formal complaints had been made about Lynch more than a decade before he was eventually investigated, with the veteran teacher killing himself in 1997 just hours after being arrested.

A class action by 86 victims of Lynch was settled with the schools’ denying liability.

A victim of Lynch, John, has written a 75,000-word submission to the royal commission and has renewed a plea for legal changes to current Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk that he first made to her Labor predecessor, Anna Bligh, in 2009. A professional, John, is expected to be a star witness at the hearing.

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