Pacific Daily News
Joelle Casteix October 1, 2016
Survivors of sexual abuse on Guam are in a very powerful position. That can be a very scary place to be.
The new law protecting sex abuse victims is a watershed moment. Finally, survivors will be able to use the civil courts to seek accountability, justice and healing. Predators hiding in plain sight will be exposed. The public will finally learn the true scope and scale of the cover-up.
But before any of that can happen, victims need to come forward.
As a survivor who used a similar California law for justice, I know firsthand how terrifying the decision can be. As an advocate who has helped hundreds of other survivors, I understand the complex dynamics that many survivors face.
If you are a survivor of child sexual abuse on Guam, here are some important factors to remember:
When elders at a mosque in Rugby learned that imam Noor Walile, above, had raped a boy, they banished him to India to avoid prosecution.
But Walile, 38, who claimed that “the devil made him do it”, later returned to the UK and he was arrested at a house in Leicester, according to this report.
He has now been jailed for six years after he pleaded guilty at Warwick Crown Court.
Judge Stephen Eyre QC told him:
The members of your community entrusted their young children to you for guidance and education. You were in a position of responsibility and leadership at the mosque. You abused that position and that trust, and defiled the faith you were paid to uphold.
He was a young boy entrusted to your care for guidance, and you raped him. It is hard to think of any greater abuse…
[Daniel Surla, cardinal and archbishop of Montevideo Daniel Sturla said Wednesday that Uruguayan Catholic Church was able to verify the existence of 40 complaints of sexual abuse.]
El cardenal y arzobispo de Montevideo Daniel Sturla dijo el pasado miércoles que la Iglesia Católica uruguaya pudo comprobar la existencia de 40 denuncias “que había que atender”.
Entrevistado por el programa Código País de Teledoce, el cardenal dijo que se recibieron 25 denuncias de abusos sexuales a través del número de teléfono que la Iglesia habilitó en abril.
Además, el programa Santo y Seña proporcionó, luego del informe sobre que se transmitió a mediados de ese mes, otras 40 denuncias.
[Pedophile priests: 400 testimonies from alleged victims have been collected by La Parole Libérée.]
Les révélations sur les scandales dans l’Eglise prennent une ampleur insoupçonnée. L’association «La Parole Libérée», basée à Lyon (Rhône), a recueilli depuis le mois de novembre 2015, 400 témoignages de personnes disant avoir été victimes de prêtres pédophiles, rapporte ce vendredi France Info.
Parmi ces victimes, certaines parlent pour la première fois, plusieurs décennies après les faits,. On peut notamment citer le cas d’un homme âgé de 93 ans : «Il a été victime d’agression sexuelle dans son enfance. Sa femme est décédée et elle n’a jamais su», raconte auprès de France Info François Devaux, cofondateur de «La Parole Libérée».
L’association a été fondée par trois anciennes victimes du père Bernard Preynat, un prêtre soupçonné de pédophilie au cours des années 1980 et 1990. Ils ont également reproché au cardinal Barbarin de…
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Agana
First of all, I would like to reiterate the position made public in my press conference on July 27, 2016, namely, to recant and to retract all the statements released previously from the Archdiocese that have put a cloud over the name of Msgr. Benavente and compromised his right to due process.
Secondly, in the beginning of July, I instituted a process in which Msgr. Benavente was allowed to present his response to the allegations of some irregularities in the administration of temporary goods of the Church. I also instructed our Delegate to the Apostolic Administrator, Fr. Jeff San Nicolas to coordinate the process by involving different parties concerned.
Having examined all the documents and reports made available to me, I hereby declare that Msgr. Benavente’s response is found both credible and satisfactory and that none of these alleged major irregularities should be…
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Agana
His Excellency, Most Reverend Savio Hon Tai Fai, SDB, Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Agaña, in consultation with the Presbyteral Council, announces the following appointments effective Sept. 30, 2016:
Rev. Msgr. Brigido U. Arroyo
Pastor Emeritus of St. Anthony and St. Victor Church in Tamuning, Guam
Given at Hagatña on Sept. 22, 2016
Rev. Msgr. James L.G. Benavente
Pastor of St. Anthony and St. Victor Church in Tamuning, Guam
Given at Hagatña on Sept. 22, 2016
Rev. Fr. Adrian L.F. Cristobal
Pastor of San Dionisio Church in Umatac, Guam
Given at Hagatña on Sept. 22, 2016
Rev. Fr. Julius B. Akinyemi
Pastor of San Dimas and Our Lady of the Rosary Church in Merizo, Guam
Given at Hagatña on Sept. 22, 2016
Rev. Fr. Joel de los Reyes
Parochial Administrator of San Vicente…
Updated: Sep 29, 2016
By Sabrina Salas Matanane
“I’m grateful for the vindication,” Monsignor James Benavente said during a press conference in which it was announced that he was cleared of any allegations of financial mismanagement. In July 2014 Archbishop Anthony Apuron removed him as Rector of the Dulce Nombre De Maria Cathedral Basilica and Director of the Catholic Cemeteries of the Archdiocese.
Monsignor Benavente said although grateful it’s not a time to celebrate but instead to roll up our sleeves to continue the critical work of reconciling and rebuilding our archdiocese. Concerned Catholics of Guam Andrew Camacho was at the press conference he said this is a step in the right direction but adds the CCOG is asking the Archdiocese for the status of the Church’s investigation of Fr. Luis Camacho.
Over a year ago the priest was arrested for Custodial Interference. He allegedly…
Updated: Sep 30, 2016
By Krystal Paco
After two long years of not having an opportunity to defend himself and his reputation, that day finally came for Monsignor James Benavente. In July 2014, one week after the monsignor celebrated 20 years as rector of the Dulce Nombe de Maria Cathedral-Basilica, Archbishop Anthony Apuron suddenly removed him from the position and his position as director of Catholic Cemeteries.
Apuron accused the monsignor of mismanaging millions of dollars in church money.
His prayers were answered. Monsignor Benavente announced, “That’s the greatest thing we can do is to pray for those who have done us harm, and that’s what I had opted to do.” For two years, he’s stood accused of financial mismanagement in the church. When the allegations surfaced, Archbishop Apuron didn’t allow for due process. Under the direction of apostolic administrator Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai, Benavente’s name…
Pacific Daily News
Monsignor James Benavente has been cleared of allegations of financial mismanagement and has been named pastor of St. Anthony’s Church, Archdiocese of Agana spokesman Father Jeff San Nicolas announced at a news conference today.
Benavente was the former rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica, before he was removed by Archbishop Anthony Apuron in July 2014. He was reinstated by Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai in July.
When Benavente was removed, Apuron cited financial problems in the church administration, a multimillion dollar church debt, problems with the Catholic cemetery finances and bookkeeping and missing contracts.
For several years, the archdiocese has been embattled over the removal of Benavente and Father Paul Gofigan, a land transfer worth tens of millions of dollars and conflicts between traditional Catholics and followers of the Neocatechumenal Way.
By BARBARA HEWSON FOR THE DAILY MAIL
Back in January last year, I attended a meeting at the House of Commons for the White Flowers campaign, which lobbies for justice for victims of historic ‘organised sexual abuse’.
It was an experience I can only describe as bizarre, at best.
Because apart from calls for ‘heads on spikes’, no one at the meeting seemed to know what it was they wanted to achieve.
This peculiar evening is what came to mind when I heard the two extraordinary announcements this week that lurched the troubled Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) yet further into turmoil.
On Thursday the senior lawyer of the Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, Ben Emmerson QC, resigned, in a further development into the troubled independent inquiry.
To get you up to speed with this complicated subject, here’s everything you need to know so far.
Theresa May first set up the inquiry in July 2014 when she was home secretary, with the aim to investigate whether “state and non-state institutions” have taken seriously their duty of care to protect children from sexual abuse within England and Wales.
The inquiry was troubled from the start: just two days after it was established, its chairwoman Baroness Butler-Sloss faced calls to quit due to a potential conflict of interest. She resigned a couple of days after.
The next chairwoman, Dame Fiona Woolf, a leading tax lawyer and then Lord Mayor of the City of London, was in the…
The national probe into child sex abuse will not work in its current form, a key group representing victims and survivors has warned.
The Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse was thrown into disarray on Thursday after the resignation of its senior lawyer, prompting calls for it to be broken up.
C hairwoman Professor Alexis Jay said she had accepted Ben Emmerson QC’s decision to step down from the post of senior counsel after two years.
The development was labelled a “disaster” for the problematic inquiry that has been blighted by resignations and is on its fourth chairwoman.
Friday 30 September 2016
Michael Mansfield QC says he is willing to replace Ben Emmerson as the top lawyer on the inquiry into institutional child abuse, but only if the inquiry is broken up.
Mansfield, a prominent barrister whom many of the survivors of child abuse have nominated to lead the process, said the inquiry had been “chaotic from beginning” and dogged by “catastrophic appointments”.
Interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme after Emmerson resigned as lead counsel to the inquiry, Mansfield said the inquiry needed a lawyer at the top, but that it was too complex to be run by one person.
He also questioned the credentials of the fourth and current chair Prof Alexis Jay, a leading social worker who led the Rotherham abuse inquiry, but insisted he could work with her.
Victims say they are “saddened, but not surprised” by the resignation of the most senior lawyer working for the independent inquiry into historical child sexual abuse.
The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association described the decision to quit by Ben Emmerson QC as “devastating”.
It said some survivors were losing faith, believing the investigation’s large remit was designed to fail.
Prime Minister Theresa May has said she still has confidence in the inquiry.
It was set up to examine whether public bodies, including the police, in England and Wales had failed in their duty to protect children from sexual abuse, and to examine claims of abuse involving “well-known people”.
Cynthia Izaguirre, WFAA September 29, 2016
DALLAS — On Friday, Bishop Kevin Farrell, the man who helped to unify and transform the Catholic Diocese of Dallas, will move on from the job he thought he would retire from.
Bishop Farrell has been promoted to a new position at the Vatican where he will be the highest-ranking American working directly with Pope Francis. He sat down with us for a final interview about what lies ahead both for him and the Diocese of Dallas.
“I thought it was a joke. Why would he have picked me? I do not know,” said Bishop Kevin Farrell.
The bishop of the Diocese of Dallas is still taken aback by the news. How did he get the attention of the pope?
“I don’t know. I would love to know why,” Farrell said during our last interview in his Dallas office.
Sep. 29, 2016
Michael Walsh, 80, was arraigned Wednesday in charges he raped and indecently attacked a Dorchester boy more than two decades ago, the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office reports.
In the 1980s and early 1990s, Walsh was an altar-boy coordinator at St. Brendan Church and a coach in the Cedar Grove Baseball League. He is charged with one count of rape of a child and two counts of indecent assault and battery on a child for alleged offenses against a boy who was then in the fourth, fifth, and sixth grades, the DA’s office reports, adding the victim, now in his late 30s, contacted authorities earlier this year:
“Walsh allegedly used his position of authority to gain access to, ‘groom, and ultimately sexually assault’ him. Walsh was said to take the victim and other children out to eat and to the…
Harriet Sherwood Religion correspondent
Friday 30 September 2016
Two high-profile survivors of sexual abuse in the Church of England are to mount a protest during the enthronement of the bishop of Oxford in response to what they claim is the church’s failure to act on their disclosures.
Michael (not his real name), an ordained C of E priest, made a formal complaint of misconduct earlier this year against Steven Croft, the new bishop, claiming that he failed to properly respond to accusations of rapes allegedly committed by a serving priest in 1984.
Similar complaints of misconduct were lodged against John Sentamu, the archbishop of York, and three other serving bishops.
The C of E has rejected the complaints because they were made after a one-year time limit set by the church.
Michael claims that he told Croft – then bishop of Sheffield…
By PRESS ASSOCIATION
The senior lawyer in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has quit, a day after being suspended from his role.
Chairwoman Professor Alexis Jay said she had accepted Ben Emmerson QC’s decision to step down from the post of senior counsel after two years.
Mr Emmerson was suspended on Wednesday night amid reports he was about to resign. His departure was announced just hours after it was revealed his junior colleague Elizabeth Prochaska had also left her role.
In a statement Prof Jay said: “There is no truth in suggestions that he has resigned due to a difference of opinion with me about the next steps for the inquiry.”
Prime Minister Theresa May had earlier said that the “really important” inquiry would go ahead as planned, amid claims that it was in “crisis”.
In his resignation letter, posted on the inquiry’s…
Robert Mendick, chief reporter, and Tom Morgan
29 SEPTEMBER 2016
The future of the national child sex abuse inquiry was plunged deeper into crisis on Thursday night after the two most senior lawyers in charge announced their resignations.
Ben Emmerson QC, the counsel to the inquiry, quit at 10pm last night, a little over 24 hours after being suspended from the role.
Mr Emmerson’s deputy Elizabeth Prochaska, the inquiry’s junior counsel, announced she had also stood down although it was claimed her decision was not linked to recent events.
In his resignation letter, Mr Emmerson insisted his decision to resign was not caused by a “difference of opinion” with Alexis Jay, the new chairman of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA).
Mr Emmerson added: “It is now time for someone else to take the helm with a different leadership of the Counsel team.”
Theresa May has insisted the inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales will not be scaled back despite recent setbacks.
The prime minister said she and Home Secretary Amber Rudd still had confidence in the inquiry.
She spoke after the lead counsel to the hearings, Ben Emmerson, was suspended on Wednesday and the inquiry’s second most senior lawyer resigned.
Elizabeth Prochaska’s resignation is said to be not linked to recent events.
Ms Prochaska told BBC Newsnight’s programme: “I can confirm that after 15 months working on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, I resigned from my position as junior counsel with effect from 15 September 2016.
“I very much valued the experience of working with the inquiry and I wish all my former colleagues the best as they continue their work.”
In A Mirror Dimley
Christians have a tradition of “laying hands” on each other to impart the Holy Spirit, to heal, and to bless. My church “trains” people to pray, which basically means we teach people to ask questions like, “Can I put my hand on your shoulder as I pray for you.”
Touching and consent go “hand in hand.”
Touch has a foundationally sacred and important place in the Christian tradition.
Touching each other inappropriately undermines the healing and life that God desires to impart in our lives. Our hands can be used to destroy, imprison, and wound or they can be used to impart freedom, spiritual gifts, and blessings.
Our message collapses if we approve inappropriate touching in one moment and then reach out to heal in another. (Trigger warning below for sexual abuse and rape.)
And yet, some evangelical churches and groups have attempted…
The Journal News
Swapna Venugopal Ramaswamy, email@example.com September 29, 2016
The archdiocese continues to be responsible for providing O’Keefe with a place to live
Lohud and Facebook readers had a lot to say about a former Rockland priest who was permanently removed from ministry by the Archdiocese of New York following allegations that he sexually abused a minor.
Monsignor John O’Keefe, who once led Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains, had been suspended last year from St. Margaret of Antioch Parish in Pearl River based on alleged abuse that occurred more than three decades ago.
Some readers were upset that no criminal charges had been brought against O’Keefe because the incidents were past the statute of limitations.
“There should be no statute of limitations on these creeps, and rather than the church continuing to provide housing, they should be incarcerated,” wrote Anthony Tascione. “Let’s not cover…
Published Thursday, September 29, 2016
A former Winnipeg priest convicted of sexual abuse has been granted day parole.
Ronald Leger previously worked at Holy Family Parish on Archibald Street. He pleaded guilty to sexually abusing three boys between 1980 and 2004.
He was sentenced to two years in prison in February 2016.
The parole board has granted him day parole, and denied a request for full parole.
During his time in the community, Leger is to have zero contact with his victims.
He will not be allowed to go near areas where kids under 18 will be. The former priest is also prohibited from having any contact with male children under 18, unless he’s accompanied by an adult who knows his criminal history and have been approved by his parole officer.
September 30, 2016
The Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide has asked the NSW Supreme Court to dismiss a criminal charge alleging he failed to tell police about a priest’s child abuse, arguing it could not be proved he believed the allegations at the time.
The dispute, which is expected to go to the High Court, is being watched by police and the national child abuse royal commission as a test case for the potential prosecution of others alleged to have not disclosed such crimes.
Lawyers representing Archbishop Philip Wilson did not yesterday seek to challenge claims he was told by two children in 1976 that the priest, Father James Fletcher, had sexually abused underage boys.
“We are not talking about … moral obligations”, the archbishop’s barrister, Bret Walker SC, told the court, arguing that such abuse was not “a serious…
Thursday 29 September 2016
The prime minister has stepped in to shore up the struggling national inquiry into child abuse, saying it was a crucial investigation to stop more children becoming victims in the future.
Theresa May insisted the inquiry, which she set up while she was home secretary, would not be scaled back. She spoke on Thursday after the sudden suspension of the most senior counsel to the inquiry, Ben Emmerson QC, the previous night.
On a visit to meet serving soldiers in Bulford, Wiltshire, May said: “For too many years too many people have been raising their voice saying what had happened to them and people have not been listening, they have not been taken seriously.
“We need to investigate, we need to learn the lessons of the past and if we don’t do that we can’t guarantee we are…
Bill Donohue comments on surveys that probe support for religious liberty:
A new Pew Research Center survey on religious liberty found that the public is split on the question of whether businesses that provide wedding services should be able to refuse same-sex couples if the owner has religious objections: 48% are in agreement and 49% are not. Catholics believe, by a margin of 54% to 43%, that businesses should be required to provide services to gay couples.
Other surveys provide a different outcome. Does this mean the Pew survey is flawed? No. It means that the wording of the question strongly influences the respondent’s answer. What also matters is whether self-identification is an accurate measure of reality.
For example, last December an AP and NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey found that 82% of Americans said religious liberty protections were important to Christians. Similarly,…
Sydney Morning Herald
A former Catholic priest has been charged over child sexual assaults between 1999 and 2006 which took place in Leichhardt and Kempsey, NSW.
Police say the 69-year-old was arrested in Port Macquarie last Friday.
He faces multiple charges including sexual intercourse without consent, aggravated indecent assault, inciting an act of indecency with a victim under 16, committing an act of indecency and indecent assault.
Police say the charges relate to the sexual and indecent assault of a boy when he was aged between 12 and 17.
Ruth Gledhill CHRISTIAN TODAY CONTRIBUTING EDITOR 29 September 2016
More research is needed into child sex abuse in other faiths besides Christianity, a new report says.
Nearly all the academic research that has been done into child sex abuse in an institutional setting has been based on Catholic abusers, with some also done on Anglican abusers.
But there has been little research into abuse by ministers of others faiths, or in non-Christian or non-religious settings.
A report commissioned by the Australian commission investigating institutional child sex abuse says: “The largest body of research from institutional contexts is based on child sexual abuse by clergy, and the majority of this research concerns Roman Catholic clergy.
“Although the research base in this area is sufficient to provide information about patterns of abuse and to allow some comparisons with literature based on perpetrators in general, there is little literature…
Summary of Case: Ordained for the Society of Jesus in 1898, Louis Taelman spent most of his long career on the Crow and Flathead Indian reservations in Montana. Early on he spent four years as president of Gonzaga College in Spokane WA. Through the 1940s and into the early 1950s he was assigned to Mt. St. Michael’s Scholasticate in Spokane, Washington in the role of “Indian missionary”, as noted in the Official Catholic Directory. He died in 1961.
Taelman’s name was included on the Diocese of Helena’s list of known alleged perpetrators of child sexual abuse. The diocese posted the list to its website in April 2015 as one of the non-monetary terms of its March 2015 bankruptcy settlement.
Died: December 24, 1961
The suspension of the leading lawyer handling the national inquiry into child sex abuse has been described as a “blow for justice” by a London MP.
Ben Emmerson QC was suspended from his post as the probe had “become very concerned” about aspects of his leadership, a spokeswoman for the inquiry said. Mr Emmerson, 53, said he learned of the move via the internet and no allegations had been put to him.
The inquiry will cover the abuse of children in care in Lambeth, and Streatham MP Chuka Umunna, who has constituents who are Lambeth abuse survivors, said: , said: “As an MP to the principal survivors’ group I’m extremely concerned about Mr Emmerson’s suspension.
“Yet another blow to the search for justice.”
The suspension of the most senior lawyer on the national inquiry into child sexual abuse has been described as a “categorical disaster”.
Ben Emmerson QC said he learned of his suspension from news reports and was yet to hear the allegations that had resulted in him being dropped from the £100m probe.
It is the latest controversy to hit the inquiry, which is already on its fourth chairwoman.
Former director of public prosecutions Lord Macdonald said the inquiry had been “careering out of control since its inception”.
He added that the Government must “face up to the reality that an inquiry lasting years into dozens of public institutions going back decades, quite unable to restrain its own remit, is destined to end as an embarrassing fiasco”.
By Allen Cone | Sept. 29, 2016
SACRAMENTO, Sept. 29 (UPI) — Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation that ends a 10-year statute of limitations on rape and child molestation charges.
Beginning next year, the law, SB813, will eliminate a time limit for certain rape and child molestation victims to pursue charges.
The new law will only apply to crimes committed after the legislation takes effect Jan. 1.
That means women who made allegations against comedian Bill Cosby won’t be helped by the new law. Cosby is facing one criminal case stemming form alleged sexual abuse and he has denied allegations by dozens of women nationwide.
The state Senate and Assembly unanimously approved the bill last month and the governor signed it without comment Wednesday.
Protect NY Kids
Contact Melanie Blow firstname.lastname@example.org
Fighting for Children and Advocates Call for Boycott, protest of Cardinal Dolan’s rededication of Coleman High School chapel
On Monday Oct. 3 at 10 AM members of the political action committee Fighting for Children, survivors of child sexual abuse, and advocates will protest Cardinal Dolan’s rededication of the chapel at the John A Coleman high school, and are urging elected officials to boycott the rededication, on account of Cardinal Dolan’s opposition to eliminating the Statute of Limitations for child sexual abuse and his efforts to keep survivors of clergy sex abuse from receiving fair compensation.
“Cardinal Dolan hid church funds in Wisconsin as Bishop and was ordered by the highest court in Wisconsin to release the funds to victims of sexual abuse within the diocese. Cardinal Dolan has led the opposition to the Omnibus Child Victims Act in NY and…
The Globe and Mail
ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2016
An emotional, decade-long battle ended quickly Wednesday for hundreds of former students of Newfoundland and Labrador residential schools.
After a two-day hearing, a provincial Supreme Court judge gave his expedited approval for a $50 million class-action settlement with the federal government.
“Everybody is thrilled,” said the plaintiffs’ lawyer, Steven Cooper.
“You have to remember that when we started this claim, we said it was worth $50 million. Well guess what, we settled for $50 million. That doesn’t happen very often in litigation.”
The settlement was reached in May, but required Justice Robert Stack’s approval before any money could be paid out. Because of his expedited ruling Wednesday, the payment process can begin once the 30-day appeal period ends.
Victims of child abuse have told a Northern Ireland Assembly committee today that The Executive Office has failed to prepare for the establishment of a compensation scheme following the conclusion of the Historic Institutional Abuse Inquiry.
The representatives of a range of child abuse survivor groups told the Committee for The Executive Office that despite a November 2015 announcement by Sir Anthony Hart, chair of the Historic Institutional Abuse Inquiry, that he will recommend a financial compensation scheme for victims when he reports in January 2017, Ministers have made no preparations to set up such a scheme and some have repeatedly refused to meet with victims.
Victims from four different survivor groups have come together with experts from Amnesty International, Ulster University and other organisations to establish a Panel of Experts on Redress which has now produced two reports setting out proposals for a compensation…
By Laura Gartry
Charges against a West Australian man accused of raping a child at a Christian mission in Western Australia’s South West more than 40 years ago have been dropped.
Philip Howard Street, 74, pleaded not guilty to six child abuse charges stemming from his employment at the Roelands Christian Mission near Collie in 1974 and 1975.
The mission was once home to hundreds of Stolen Generations’ children, with about 500 Aboriginal children housed there from the 1940s to the 1970s.
In February, Mr Street, from Albany, was charged by a specialist police taskforce set up to investigate claims that came to light during the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
He had pleaded not guilty to two counts of rape and four counts of indecent treatment of a child under 14 in a Bunbury court in May.
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse
29 September, 2016
A new research report conducted for the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has examined available evidence regarding the characteristics, motivations and offending behaviour of child sexual abuse perpetrators in both institutional and non-institutional contexts.
Royal Commission acting CEO, Marianne Christmann, said the report, Evidence and frameworks for understanding perpetrators of institutional child sexual abuse, explores the principal themes found in the literature and examines research specific to perpetrators of child sexual abuse in institutional settings.
This report demonstrates that it is possible to identify commonalities in the characteristics of studied adult perpetrators of child sexual abuse and children or young people with harmful sexual behaviours. Despite these identified commonalities, the characteristics of perpetrators are still considerably diverse.
“The report is an important contribution to the work of the Royal Commission through…
Matthew Weaver and Sandra Laville
Thursday 29 September 2016
The suspension of the most senior lawyer to the troubled public inquiry into institutional child abuse has been called a devastating blow to survivors of abuse.
Ben Emmerson QC was suspended before he was expected to resign over apparent disagreements about the remit of the inquiry under its fourth chair, Alexis Jay. It is the latest setback to the inquiry after the resignations of three previous chairs, and has fuelled fears that the process is “careering out of control”.
Ian McFadyen, a campaigner and survivor of abuse, said the inquiry had been beset by “catastrophe after catastrophe”.
Asked on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme about the impact of Emmerson’s suspension, he said: “It is one of the largest inquiries that the United Kingdom is to undergo and legal advice and counsel of his quality and…
BuzzFeed News Reporter
California will no longer put a deadline on the prosecution of rape and other sexual assaults.
Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed the Justice for Victims Act, which eliminates the criminal statute of limitations on rape, sodomy, lewd or lascivious acts, continuous sexual abuse of a child, oral copulation, and sexual penetration. Previously, a perpetrator could only be convicted within 10 years of the crime.
“Rapists should never be able to evade legal consequences simply because an arbitrary time limit has expired,” State Sen. Connie Leyva said in a statement. “There must never be an expiration date on justice!”
The bill had received unanimous support from Republicans and Democrats in the state legislature. The California Women’s Law Center was involved in drafting its language, and local district attorneys and the California Police Chiefs Association also supported it. Six California women…
By Kenrick Cai | Thursday, September 29
The real-life investigative reporter in “Spotlight” offered an inside look into the Academy Award-winning movie and the story behind it Wednesday night.
Matt Carroll—former database reporting specialist for The Boston Globe investigative team called Spotlight and self-professed “data geek”—discussed the team’s Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation that uncovered pervasive child sex abuse within the Boston Catholic Church and “Spotlight,” the 2015 film made about it. Sponsored by the DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy, the event was held in the Sanford School of Public Policy for an audience of about 40 people.
“This whole movie thing was a total whirlwind,” Carroll said. “I was talking to my wife about it, and she said the Pulitzer was a big deal for a weekend. This was a big deal for months.”
The Boston Globe published about 600 stories related to the…
Timna Jacks, Education Reporter
29 Sep 2016
A serial paedophile and former Geelong Grammar teacher who Victoria Police was set to charge with abusing students at the elite school is free in Ireland after being deported in an extraordinary inter-agency bungle.
The man had served time in a Queensland prison on child abuse charges, but was deported on his release after Victoria Police failed to flag their investigation with Immigration.
The Irish citizen was accused in last year’s federal child abuse royal commission of fondling the penis of a pre-teen Geelong Grammar boy while masturbating in church, stroking a six-year-old student’s penis in bed, and instructing senior students to perform sexual acts in underground rooms.
The man, a former Geelong Grammar student, has been convicted of child abuse offences on four separate occasions, and was set to face new charges over alleged abuse at the…
Thu 29 Sep 2016
By Alex Williams
The most senior lawyer on the national inquiry into how the Church and other UK institutions dealt with the sexual abuse of children learned of his suspension from news reports on the internet.
Ben Emmerson QC has been taken off-duty after the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) had “recently become very concerned” about aspects of his leadership, a spokesperson for the probe said.
Lawyers acting for the inquiry’s counsel said last night: “Mr Emmerson has read this evening on the internet that he has been suspended from the [IICSA]. If, and when, allegations are put to him, he will respond appropriately.”
The suspension of Mr Emmerson has been seen as another dent to the credibility of the IICSA, which was established by the then-home secretary Theresa May in 2014.
Nadia Khomami and Matthew Weaver
Thursday 29 September 2016
Ben Emmerson QC has been suspended from the the troubled inquiry into institutional child abuse before he was expected to resign over disagreements with the fourth chair, Alexis Jay. His suspension is the latest setback to an investigation that has lurched from “catastrophe to catastrophe”, according to leading campaigner and child abuse survivor Ian MacFadyen.
The former director of public prosecutions, Lord MacDonald, said the inquiry had been “careering out of control since its inception”.
Here is a summary of the inquiry’s brief and beleaguered history:
7 July 2014
Theresa May, then home secretary, announces a public inquiry into child abuse prompted by allegations of a cover-up of the crimes of prominent offenders such as Jimmy Savile and Cyril Smith. She says the inquiry has the remit of investigating whether “state and non-state institutions”, including…
Thursday 29 September 2016
Trust and confidence are the two things stripped away from children who are sexually abused by adults, often for life. As adults themselves, many describe how they struggle and fail to trust anyone, particularly authority figures who wield power in institutions.
The one thing, perhaps the primary requirement, of a national public inquiry into the sexual abuse of tens of thousands of children over decades within England and Wales, was to seek their trust and gain their confidence.
Yet in the last few months the shambolic goings on at the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA) – the sudden departure of another chair, the manoeuvrings in secret over its remit, the future of the project to gather the testimonies of victims and the suspension late on Wednesday night of its lead counsel Ben Emmerson –…
By Jean Hopfensperger Star Tribune SEPTEMBER 29, 2016
The Ramsey County attorney’s office released the final mountain of documents from its criminal investigation into the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis this week, providing new details of allegations of sexual advances by former Archbishop John Nienstedt and of the church’s mishandling of convicted sex offender Curtis Wehmeyer.
Nienstedt’s interactions with seminarians drew concern from young men and clergy leaders more recently than had been revealed before, including during his seven-year tenure in St. Paul ending in 2015, according to files. That’s in addition to the previously reported allegations of sexual improprieties with adult men made by former colleagues in the Detroit area dating to the 1970s.
Documents show that former Archbishop Harry Flynn — like Nienstedt — gave special attention to Wehmeyer, a former priest, including overriding a 1996 recommendation by the archdiocese’s vocation office that…
Press and Dakotan
By Randy Dockendorf email@example.com
A priest serving two Bon Homme County parishes has been placed on administrative leave.
Bishop Paul Swain of the Diocese of Sioux Falls has taken the action following a sex-abuse allegation against the Rev. Joe Forcelle, who serves St. Leo Parish in Tyndall and St. Vincent Parish in Springfield.
Swain addressed the allegation, which Forcelle denies, in a written statement.
“The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis has informed me of an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor by Reverend Joseph T. Forcelle when he served in the Archdiocese,” Swain wrote.
“The child sexual abuse allegedly took place in the late-1970s and early-1980s when Father Forcelle was serving as a priest at Saint Mark Parish in Saint Paul, MN. The archdiocese reported this allegation to civil authorities.”
I have recently returned from the Public Hearing of the Royal Commission into the response of Catholic Church authorities to allegations of child sexual abuse by John Joseph Farrell. The hearing has not formally concluded but has been adjourned. In due course the Royal Commission will publish a report on their findings and recommendations.
This statement is my personal reflection following my attendance at the Royal Commission Hearing. It is my hope that by reading this you may come to an understanding of my own depth of sorrow and shame for the failings of our Church and Diocese and that you might be informed of the changes that have been taking place in the Diocese to ensure that our parishes are safe places for all the children and vulnerable in our care.
Listening to the victims and survivors
Along with others from the Diocese I sat…
Victims of historical sexual, physical and emotional child abuse in church and state institutions in Northern Ireland have accused Stormont of failing to face up to the need to provide proper compensation for their suffering.
Two victims who addressed the Northern Assembly’s Executive committee on Wednesday were also critical of the Catholic Primate Archbishop Eamon Martin.
Jon McCourt of Survivors North West and Margaret McGuckian of Survivors and Victims of Institutional Abuse said that when they met Archbishop Martin in July they got the impression that he felt the Catholic church was the victim rather than the survivors.
Mr McCourt said they felt “belittled” at the meeting.
“The church, I think, just literally fobbed us off and in fact there was a point where both Margaret and I were going to get up and leave the meeting because we were more or less…
Los Angeles Times
SEPT. 28, 2016
Sex offenders will soon have to report their email addresses, user names and other Internet identifiers to police under a bill Governor Jerry Brown signed Wednesday.
It will apply to people convicted on or after Jan. 1, 2017 of Internet-related sex crimes.
Law enforcement can use the information only to investigate a sex crime, kidnapping or human trafficking.
The bill amends parts of California law enacted in 2012 when voters passed Proposition 35, an anti sex-trafficking law.
Proposition 35 passed by statewide ballot with more than 80% of the vote. It increased punishments for human traffickers and expanded the definition of human trafficking to include the creation and distribution of child pornography.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) – California Governor Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed a bill to end the statute of limitations for rape, a measure inspired by accusations against comedian Bill Cosby, some of which surfaced decades after alleged crimes occurred.
Cosby, who built a long career on family friendly comedy, including his long-running NBC sitcom “The Cosby Show,” has steadfastly denied ever assaulting anyone and has insisted that all his sexual encounters were consensual.
He is charged in Pennsylvania with drugging and sexually assaulting a former Temple University employee, Andrea Constand, at his home in 2004. In California, he faces a civil suit by a woman now in her 50s who alleges that Cosby plied her with alcohol and molested her in 1974 at the Playboy Mansion when she was aged 15.
By DON THOMPSON, Associated Press
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The emotional stories of women who say they were sexually assaulted more than a decade ago by comedian Bill Cosby prompted California state lawmakers to approve a bill to eliminate the state’s 10-year limit on filing rape and related charges.
On Wednesday, Gov. Jerry Brown announced that he has approved the legislation to revoke that limitation.
Beginning next year, the bill will end the statute of limitations in certain rape and child molestation cases. It will also end the time limit on older cases in which the statute of limitations has not yet expired.
The new law, SB813, will not, however, help women who made allegations against Cosby dating back more than 10 years, including some from the 1960s.
Cosby has repeatedly denied the sex abuse allegations made by dozens of women nationwide. He is facing just one…
Yorkshire Post Radio
The most senior lawyer on the national probe into child sexual abuse has been suspended from duty.
It comes after the independent inquiry became “very concerned” about aspects of QC Ben Emmerson’s leadership, a spokeswoman said.
She said Mr Emmerson, who is counsel to the inquiry, has been “suspended from duty so that these can be properly investigated”.
The spokeswoman added: “Suggestions in the press that Mr Emerson was considering resigning after raising disagreements over the future direction of the inquiry are untrue.
“They are not a matter on which he has advised the chair of the inquiry or the panel.”
It had been reported that Mr Emmerson was preparing to quit after clashing with the investigation’s new head Alexis Jay.
Robert Mendick, chief reporter
28 SEPTEMBER 2016
The senior lawyer to the national child abuse inquiry has been suspended from his £400,000-a-year post, plunging the investigation into its worst crisis yet.
Ben Emmerson QC was removed over concerns about his leadership, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) said in a statement.
He had earlier been reported to be on the verge of resigning as counsel to the inquiry following an alleged clash with its new chairman, Professor Alexis Jay.
Insiders loyal to Prof Jay had described Mr Emmerson as “arrogant” ahead of the announcement.
This will be very distressing to many survivors for the inquiry to have suffered another setback
Gabrielle Shaw, NAPAC
In its statement, IICSA said: “The inquiry has recently become very concerned about aspects of Mr Emmerson’s leadership of the counsel team. He has therefore been suspended from duty…
The most senior lawyer working for the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales has been suspended from duty.
The inquiry said it had “become very concerned about aspects” of Ben Emmerson QC’s leadership of his team.
Mr Emmerson said he was “unable” to comment at this time.
The inquiry said press suggestions Mr Emmerson was considering resigning after raising disagreements over its future direction were untrue.
In a statement, it said: “They are not a matter on which he has advised the chair or panel.”
It said he had been suspended so matters “can be properly investigated”.
The inquiry was set up in 2014 to examine whether public bodies including the police have failed in their duty to protect children from sexual abuse. It will also examine claims of abuse involving “well-known people”.
Sandra Laville and Owen Bowcott
Wednesday 28 September 2016
The most senior lawyer on the public inquiry into institutional child abuse in England and Wales was suddenly suspended on Wednesday over what the inquiry said were concerns over aspects of his leadership.
Ben Emmerson QC had been expected to resign in the coming days, apparently over disagreements over the remit of the inquiry under its fourth chair, Alexis Jay. But in a move that surprised those close to the discussions, the inquiry announced late on Wednesday that Emmerson, a respected human rights lawyer, was to be suspended and put under investigation.
“The inquiry has recently become very concerned about aspects of Mr Emmerson’s leadership of the counsel team,” the statement from the independent inquiry said.
“He has therefore been suspended from duty so that these can be properly investigated. Suggestions in the press that…
Senator Connie M. Leyva
SB 813 Eliminates Statute of Limitations for Rape in California
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
SACRAMENTO – After earning unanimous bipartisan support in both the Senate and Assembly, Governor Jerry Brown today signed SB 813 authored by Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) that will eliminate the statute of limitations for rape and related crimes in California.
Co-sponsored by San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael Ramos and the California Women’s Law Center (CWLC), SB 813 will ensure justice for victims and survivors of felony sexual offenses by allowing the indefinite criminal prosecution of rape, sodomy, lewd or lascivious acts, continuous sexual abuse of a child, oral copulation, and sexual penetration. Existing California law presently generally limits the prosecution of a felony sexual offense to only 10 years after the offense is committed, unless DNA evidence is found which then offers a victim additional time. According to…
The Worthy Adversary
September 28, 2016 Joelle Casteix
In what can be called the “pleasant surprise of the decade,” I just got word that CA Governor Jerry Brown just signed SB 813 into law, which eliminates the statute of limitations for rape.
From Senator Connie Leyva’s press release:
Co-sponsored by San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael Ramos and the California Women’s Law Center (CWLC), SB 813 will ensure justice for victims and survivors of felony sexual offenses by allowing the indefinite criminal prosecution of rape, sodomy, lewd or lascivious acts, continuous sexual abuse of a child, oral copulation, and sexual penetration. Existing California law presently generally limits the prosecution of a felony sexual offense to only 10 years after the offense is committed, unless DNA evidence is found which then offers a victim additional time.
After Brown’s utter failure with his veto of SB 131, this is…
By Emma Grimshaw | Posted: September 28, 2016
An Evangelical church left a ‘significant delay’ in reporting one of its pastors had sexually abused a 14-year-old and a senior leader tried to persuade the boy’s family to drop the allegations an inquiry concluded.
Bristol Community Church, based in Kingswood, has been blasted for a series of errors which amounted to serious misconduct and failure to protect its young and vulnerable member.
The results for the long-awaited inquiry into the church, which last year changed its name to Bourne Christian Centre, were published on Friday.
In 2012 the church’s pastor James Hennah, who also worked as a magistrate and a Bristol Grammar School counsellor, pleaded guilty to abusing a boy after befriending him and his family at a church group he ran.
The government has been accused of dragging its feet over compensation for victims of historical child abuse.
Campaigners claim political leaders have “shied away” from the issue of financial redress and reiterated appeals for urgent action.
Margaret McGuckin said: “We are asking and pleading to our government, please come off the fence, stop these excuses and get something sorted.
“How many more of us are going to be dead and gone?”
The plea was made as members of an expert panel examining potential compensation schemes briefed MLAs on the Executive scrutiny committee at Stormont.
Ms McGuckin, a high-profile member of the panel, added: ” What people want is to be compensated so that for the remainder of their life they can live in some sort of peace and tranquillity, and to afford some comfort.
By Gareth Gordon
BBC News NI Political Correspondent
Child abuse survivors have said they felt so “belittled” during a meeting with the leader of the Catholic Church in Ireland they almost walked out.
They told a Stormont committee that Archbishop Eamon Martin had given the impression that he felt the church was now the victim.
Jon McCourt and Margaret McGuckian also claimed the Executive Office had let victims down by failing to establish a compensation scheme following the end of the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry (HIA).
And they claimed ministers had ignored repeated requests for meetings over a nine-month period.
But they reserved their strongest criticism for the Catholic Church, claiming that during a meeting with Archbishop Martin in Armagh in July he seemed to believe it was turning from an issue of concern about the abuse of children into a financial argument…
[From the BishopAccountability.org datbase: Walsh was ordained for the Grand Rapids MI diocese in 6/02; he was placed on leave in 7/02 after the Grand Rapids diocese learned of allegations of sexual abuse of two children while he was a lay person 40 years previously in another (unspecified) diocese. Walsh was 65 and a former Air Force Sergeant at time of his ordination. Walsh is a native of Boston MA.]Grand Rapids, MI Source:
DORCHESTER – A former altar boy coordinator is facing two counts of rape of a child and three counts of indecent assault from an incident that happened in the late 1980s and early 1990s, said the district attorney.
Michael Walsh, 79, was an altar boy coordinator at Dorchester’s St. Brendan’s on Rita Road. when the assaults occurred, said the Suffolk County. He later became a priest but was relieved of his priesthood duties…
BOSTON (CBS) – A former altar boy coordinator at a Dorchester church was arraigned Wednesday on charges that he sexually abused a child in the 1980s.
Prosecutors say Michael Walsh, who was altar boy coordinator at St. Brendan’s Church in Dorchester, sexually abused a child over the course of three years starting in 1988.
The victim, now 38 years old, just came forward to police this year.
Walsh pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of child rape and indecent assault and battery. The crimes allegedly occurred between 1988 and 1991 when the victim was in fourth through sixth grades.
Prosecutors say Walsh used his position as an altar boy coordinator and as a coach with Cedar Grove baseball to gain access and sexually abuse the victim.
DORCHESTER, MA (WHDH) – A former priest appeared in court Wednesday on rape and assault charges.
Michael Walsh, 80, also served as an altar boy coordinator in Dorchester.
Walsh was accused of raping a child in the late 1980s and 1990s when he served at St. Brendan’s School.
The victim, now 38 years old, came forward and reported the abuse to law enforcement this past summer.
Prosecutors said the statute of limitations has not expired because Walsh has lived out of state for more than a decade, which puts the statute on hold.
By Gintautas Dumcius | firstname.lastname@example.org
BOSTON – Michael Walsh, who once served as an altar boy coordinator at St. Brendan’s Church in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood, was arraigned Wednesday on charges of raping a child and indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of 14.
Just days away from turning 80 years old, Walsh pleaded not guilty to the charges in Suffolk Superior Court.
The clerk magistrate, Anne Kaczmarek, imposed conditions that included GPS monitoring, staying away from the victim and witnesses, no unsupervised contact with children under the age of 16, and surrendering his passport and remaining in Massachusetts.
A Suffolk County grand jury indicted Walsh on Sept. 16.
In a statement filed by prosecutors on Wednesday, Walsh allegedly used his position as an altar boy coordinator, as well as a coach with Cedar Grove Baseball, from Sept. 1988 through June 1991 to “gain…
[Today the Independent Abuse Commission starts hearing from victims of sexual abuse. Former Canisius College student Matthias Katsch warns that sexual abuse of minors is not a phenomenon of the past and members should look at the issue in the “here and now.” He believes there are seven to eight million abuse survivors in Germany.]
Matthias Katsch, former student at Canisius College, calls by the Independent Commission Abuse uncovering social and institutional structures that facilitate the abuse.
One should not stop there, to hear examples of stories of abuse and perceive, but it needs to be talked about responsibilities at all levels, warns Katsch. “In environments where the institution and in society, so that these acts are actually less in the future.”
Heute beginnt die Unabhängige Missbrauchskommission mit Opferanhörungen. Der ehemalige Canisius-Schüler Matthias Katsch warnt davor, sexuelle Gewalt gegen Minderjährige als Erscheinung der Vergangenheit zu betrachten….
[The Munster diocese has closed an investigation into abuse allegations made against a priest but now it is up to the Vatican to decide.]
Abgeschlossen ist die Voruntersuchung des Bistums Münster gegen einen zuletzt in Horstmar tätigen Priester wegen der sexuell intendierte Handlungen an einem Kind. Die Glaubenskongregation im Vatikan wird entscheiden, welche Konsequenzen der Fall für den Geistlichen hat.
Abgeschlossen ist jetzt die kirchenrechtliche Voruntersuchung des Bistums Münster gegen einen zuletzt in Horstmar tätigen Priester, der sexuell intendierte Handlungen an einem Kind vorgenommen haben soll. Das Ergebnis der Voruntersuchung geht nun an die Glaubenskongregation im Vatikan. Sie wird entscheiden, welche kirchenrechtlichen Konsequenzen der Fall für den Geistlichen hat.
Hazel Torres 26 September 2016
It was a case of a shameful “wrong send” that resulted in the tragic death of a pastor.
Pastor Letsego of Christ Embassy in Limpopo, South Africa reportedly hanged himself in shame after he mistakenly sent photos of his genitals to members of his church using the WhatsApp texting service in mobile phones.
According to the online news source Live Monitor, the married pastor intended to send the pictures to his mistress who, it is said, is a member of the same church.
Worse, the news source said the pastor sent a message that reads “Wife is away, it’s all yours tonight” along with the photos.
To his utter dismay, he reportedly realised his mistake right after pressing the send button of his mobile phone.
Pastor Letsego of Christ Embassy in Limpopo, South Africa reportedly hanged himself after he accidentally sent photos of his genitals to members of his church using the WhatsApp mobile phone texting app.
According to this report, the married pastor intended to send the pictures to his mistress, a member of the same church.
The message that accompanied the photos read:
Wife is away, it’s all yours tonight.
He reportedly realised his mistake right after pressing the send button of his phone.
Members of the WhatsApp church group who received the photos and message were shocked and outraged. They tried to call up the pastor, who wouldn’t answer. The pastor then left the group.
The following day, he was found hanging in his rented church house.
Said one of Pastor Letsego’s congregants who declined to be named:
Pastor’s antics have always been a cause for…
By John R. Ellement GLOBE STAFF SEPTEMBER 28, 2016
A 79-year-old former Roman Catholic priest who supervised altar boys as a laymen in a Dorchester parish is now facing rape and indecent assault charges in Suffolk Superior Court in Boston Wednesday.
Michael Walsh is scheduled to be arraigned on two counts of rape of a child and three counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of 14, according to Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley’s office, which is prosecuting the case.
While a layman, Walsh served as the volunteer “altar boy coordinator’’ at St. Brendan’s Church in Dorchester from 1988 to 1991 and is alleged to have assaulted a boy during those years, prosecutors said.
Walsh also served as a layman in the same capacity at Saint Francis de Sales Church in Charlestown in the mid to late 1950s, prosecutors said.
BOSTON —A former priest accused of child rape and assaults he allegedly committed while he was an altar boy coordinator at a Dorchester church is scheduled to face charges Wednesday.
Michael Walsh, 79, is expected to be arraigned Suffolk Superior Court on two counts of rape of a child and three counts of indecent assault and battery on a child.
Officials said Walsh allegedly committed the assaults against one boy during the late 1980s and early 1990s while at St Brendan’s. Previously, Walsh was a layman at St. Francis de Sales Church in Charlestown.
Walsh later became a priest, but was relieved of those duties in 2002.
Suffolk prosecutors were able to bring the charges in part because Walsh spent many years in Florida and Michigan, tolling the statute of limitations.
BY DANIEL CRAIG
A Pennsylvania bishop has acknowledged a statewide investigation into six Catholic dioceses for their handling of sexual abuse claims.
Allentown Bishop John O. Barres said in a letter to parishioners Sunday the diocese has cooperated fully with the state attorney general’s office during the probe.
“The Diocese of Allentown is committed to the protection and safety of the children and young people entrusted to its care,” Barres said in the letter.
“Abuse of minors is a grave sin and crime. The Diocese of Allentown has zero tolerance for offenders and, as noted above, reports allegations of abuse to the appropriate authorities.”
Earlier this month, it was reported that six Pennsylvania dioceses were under investigation: Erie, Greensburg, Pittsburgh, Scranton, Harrisburg and Allentown. Barres is the last bishop out of those heading the six dioceses to publicly confirm the investigation, according to the…
By JOHN FINNERTY CNHI Harrisburg Correspondent
HARRISBURG – A push to allow victims of clergy sex abuse the right to sue for damages in old cases is barreling toward a vote, with support from key state officials.
The House last spring opened a window allowing victims of old sex crimes to sue for damages. The window was snapped closed by the Senate, which voted only to extend the statute of limitations on those cases moving forward.
Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks County, who has pushed to allow victims to seek justice against their molesters and church leaders who’ve covered up the crimes, said he believes House lawmakers will revive the retroactivity clause, giving the Senate another chance to pass it this fall.
“This is not just a Catholic clergy problem,” Rozzi said at a Capitol press conference Tuesday. “But the church has become the face of institutional…
Click on Detroit
By Kevin Dietz – Reporter, Derick Hutchinson
September 27, 2016
DETROIT – A Michigan prosecutor is teaming up with a group of men who were sexually abused as boys by their priest to try to keep the pedophile from being released on parole.
The incidents happened over 30 years ago, but they’re coming forward now as the priest is up for parole in Oklahoma.
Only new charges can keep the priest behind bars.
Abused by the priest as children, the victims say its time to speak up so that it never happens again.
“He knelt beside the bed I was in,” John Wood said. “He held my hand … said the Lord’s Prayer … and then climbed in bed with me … and had his way with me.”
The men are being called heroes in a horrific case of abuse.
“For me, I was…
By Holly Moore, Katie Nicholson, CBC News Posted: Sep 28, 2016
Catholic priest Ron Léger, who’s serving time for sexually assaulting teen boys he met a drop-in centre, will not be granted full parole. A federal parole board determined he is an “undue risk.” Instead, the board voted to grant him day parole for six months.
The board determined Léger had a one-in-five chance of reoffending and he scored “just over the low threshold” as a moderate risk to reoffend sexually. They denied his application for full parole in a Sept. 15, 2016 decision.
Léger, 78, is serving a two-year sentence for sexually assaulting three male victims. Two were teens when they were assaulted in the 1980s. They met Leger at a drop-in centre he founded in St. Vital. The other teen was a family friend and parishioner in the early 2000s.
Léger plans to live…
Guam Daily Post
By Neil Pang | Post News Staff
During a sobering ceremony at the Guam Veterans Cemetery in Piti yesterday, Silent No More founder Joe Santos retired the sign he had been displaying on the back of his pickup truck since June. Together with Sens. Frank Blas Jr. and Frank Aguon Jr., Santos removed the iconic sign from the bed of his pickup at the foot of the grave of the late Joseph “Sonny” Quinata.
The sign has become something of an itinerant landmark – the stark black on white “Silent No More Stop Child Sex Abuse” is easily seen and announces the likely presence of a protest nearby.
Santos said he had originally erected the sign as a silent promise made to Doris Concepcion during the internment of her son Joseph “Sonny” Quinata’s remains.
“I watched his mother slide his ashes into his final resting…
Tuesday 27 September 2016
Fresh doubts about the future of the beleaguered independent inquiry into child sexual abuse have arisen amid concerns that its most senior lawyer is about to quit.
Ben Emmeron QC, who is counsel to the inquiry, is believed to be preparing to resign against the backdrop of differences with the body’s chair, Alexis Jay, who took up her position following the resignation of Dame Lowell Goddard last month.
The question marks over Emmeron’s continued involvement could not have come at a worse time for the inquiry, which was plunged into uncertainty following the resignation of Goddard, a New Zealand judge, who was the third person to have been named as inquiry chair.
Jay, a child protection expert with more than 30 years’ experience, led the official inquiry into the Rotherham scandal, which found that at least 1,400 children…
Sean O’Neill, Chief Reporter
September 28 2016
The most senior lawyer at the national child abuse inquiry is poised to resign in a move that could deal the £100 million investigation a fatal blow.
Ben Emmerson, QC, counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), is understood to disagree fundamentally with the new chairwoman, Alexis Jay, about its future. He is thought to favour a restructuring to reduce the inquiry’s workload while Professor Jay, along with the home secretary and No 10, is determined that it should stick to the original terms of reference.
The most senior lawyer working for the inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales is considering resigning, the BBC understands.
Ben Emmerson QC is believed to disagree with its new chairwoman, Professor Alexis Jay, over its future.
The Times reports that he wants to reduce the inquiry’s workload, but Prof Jay and the home secretary have both said its scope will not be changed.
Prof Jay is the fourth person appointed to lead the inquiry.
An inquiry spokesman said Mr Emmerson had not resigned as counsel to the inquiry, while Mr Emmerson told the BBC he was not in a position to comment.
Manchester Evening News
BY SIMON SMITH
Ben Emmerson is said to disagree with the new chairwoman over the future of the investigation
The national inquiry into child sexual abuse could be facing another serious blow after reports its most senior lawyer is considering standing down.
Ben Emmerson QC, who is counsel to the inquiry, is said to disagree with its chairwoman Alexis Jay about its future.
His departure would represent a fresh setback for the probe, which has been beset by problems since it was launched by then Home Secretary Theresa May in 2014.
A spokeswoman for the inquiry said Mr Emmerson has not resigned.
He is thought to favour a restructuring to reduce the inquiry’s workload, according to The Times.
28 SEPTEMBER 2016
The most senior lawyer at the national inquiry into child sexual abuse is reportedly considering resigning in a dispute with the new chairwoman.
Ben Emmerson QC is said to disagree “fundamentally” with Professor Alexis Jay over the future of the investigation in a row that could bring another serious setback for the probe.
He is believed to want the inquiry to be restructured to reduce its workload, but Prof Jay and Home Secretary Amber Rudd have said the scope will not be changed.
Earlier this month, Prof Jay defended the inquiry and insisted it will not be scaled back – despite her predecessor Dame Lowell Goddard saying there was an “inherent problem” in its “sheer scale and size” as she called for a “complete review”.
Radio New Zealand
An advocate for abuse survivors is urging victims to think twice before notifying Guam’s Catholic Church of abuse.
The Church has issued a statement encouraging people with knowledge of sexual abuse by clergy members to contact its abuse response co-ordinator.
This is after the passing of a bill lifting the statute of limitations for lawsuits against child sex abusers and private institutions that may have protected them.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests spokesperson, Joelle Casteix, said the law would give victims accountability.
But she said they should be wary of the church as it won’t want abuse exposed.
“Anytime anyone is abused do not call the Church, call law enforcement, because the Church will always try to protect themselves. Call the police, call a support group such as SNAP, call a lawyer. Don’t rely on the Church to do the right thing because…
September 27, 2016 By Tony Romeo
HARRISBURG (CBS) — It appears a standoff may be taking shape between the state House and Senate over legislation to give adult victims of child sex abuse more time to seek justice.
The bill would eliminate the criminal statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases. In civil cases, the measure would also eliminate the statute of limitations for most individual defendants, and lengthen the time a victim would have to sue an organization. As it stands now, those provisions would only apply going forward.
The House passed a bill that allowed for retroactive lawsuits. But the Senate, citing constitutionality concerns, removed it. Now House leaders have indicated retroactivity will likely be put back into the bill.
Jennifer Kocher is a spokeswoman for leaders of the Republican Senate majority and said many things are being lost.
“All of these good…
The Open Tabernacle: Here Comes Everybody
Posted on September 28, 2016 by Betty Clermont
The clerical sex abuse scandal has revealed the core of corruption in the institutional Catholic Church. There have already been hundreds of thousands of victims around the world.
Since the systemic sexual abuse of children made national headlines in 2002, survivors (young people who had experienced child sexual abuse had a suicide rate that was 10.7 to 13.0 times the national rates) and their advocates have demanded essential reforms necessary to protect children in the future.
One is that the pope require that all criminal acts be immediately reported to the police. This is still optional according to Pope Francis. Another is that the pontiff hold bishops accountable. Pope Francis has never disciplined anyone for protecting child sex abusers, obstructing justice for the survivors or impeding measures to keep children safe because that’s…
By CHARLIE BAYLISS
Wed, Sep 28, 2016
Ben Emmerson QC is thought to have fundamental differences of opinion with the new chairwoman, Alexis Jay, about the future of the independent inquiry into child sex abuse.
Emerson wants to reduce the workload of Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse’s (IICSA), while Professor Jay wants to push ahead with the original plans for the project, it is believed.
The inquiry is examining historic sex abuse claims dating back more than six decades – with Westminster, the Church, schools and the armed forces all under the spotlight.
The inquiry was originally scheduled to span at least 10 years – but the continuous delays could push that back further.
Mr Emmerson is thought to be “actively considering” his position after being appointed by Theresa May two years ago when she was Home Secretary.
By ALEXANDER WARD FOR DAILY MAIL
A lawyer helping to lead the Government’s child abuse inquiry is poised to quit, it was claimed last night.
Ben Emmerson QC, currently counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, is responsible for probing claims of historical abuse at organisations from Westminster to the Church.
Mr Emmerson is understood to fundamentally disagree with the inquiry’s fourth chairwoman, Alexis Jay, over the way the inquiry is set to run, the Times reported.
He is believed to be in favour of restructuring the inquiry while Professor Jay, with the backing of the Home Office and the Prime Minister, insists it should stay within its original remit.
Wed 28 Sep 2016
By Hannah Tooley
A church minister has been jailed after assaulting his own daughter twice.
Woolwich Crown Court was told Mark Anderson, 54, abused his status as a minister to hide the abuse.
22-year-old Rebekah Anderson has waived her right to anonymity to try to encourage other survivors of sexual violence to come forward.
Mr Anderson has been jailed for 19 years after being convicted of two charges of rape at Woolwich Crown Court.
He has been convicted of one assault by penetration and one assault occasioning actual bodily harm when she was aged 12 and 14 respectively.
Rebekah told The Times newspaper: “I couldn’t take it anymore, it was too much of a build-up, it was holding me back and I couldn’t take it.”
By Elizabeth Campbell – Reporter , News4Jax.com Staff
September 27, 2016
BRUNSWICK, Ga. – After hearing from friends of Pastor Ken Adkins, as well listening to recordings of phone calls of Adkins talking about the child molestation charges against him, a Glynn County judge said he would rule Wednesday on bond on charges of aggravated child molestation.
Adkins, 56, pastor of the Greater Dimensions Christian Fellowship, has been in the Glynn County Jail since Aug. 26, when he surrendered on charges resulting from allegations he molested a teenage boy in 2010.
The young man told the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that Adkins molested him when he was a member of Adkins’ church as a boy under the age of 16.
After hearing from four pastors who know Adkins and said he poses no risk to the community and hearing portions of the audio recordings, Superior Court…
DES MOINES, Iowa —A Des Moines man is back behind bars after being sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison for third-degree sexual abuse and harboring a runaway.
Police said Damion Rutues, 37, hid a 15-year-old runaway girl in a small sleeping area inside a church on Forest Avenue.
Court documents show the 15-year-old girl ran away from home with her girlfriend.
Rutues let them stay inside Learning of the Lord Revival Center because the girls said they were homeless and had nowhere else to go.
“He was familiar with the family,” Des Moines Police Sgt. Paul Parizek said. “He was lying to her parents that she, in fact, was there, and while she was there he was having sexual intercourse with her.”
THORNTON, Colo. – Several former members of Agape Bible Church are coming forward claiming they have also been victims of sexual assault because of the church.
The Problem Solvers first reported last week that associate pastor Robert “Bob” Wyatt turned himself into police. He is accused of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl at church over a period of two years.
After police documents were released, the Problem Solvers reported that Agape’s head pastor Darrell Ferguson may have known about Wyatt’s alleged crime and did not report it to police.
Ferguson tells FOX31 under Colorado law he was not legally obligated to report the suspected crime since the information was divulged during a confidential counseling session.
Now former church members tell the Problem Solvers they believe Agape and Ferguson have a history of abuse and a history of covering it up.
The Catholic Spirit
The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis announced Sept. 20 that it received an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor and reported it to law enforcement.
The alleged sexual abuse involves Father Joseph Thomas Forcelle and is from the late 1970s and early 1980s when he was serving as a priest at St. Mark in St. Paul. Father Forcelle has been serving in the Diocese of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, since 1984. The archdiocese said it notified the Sioux Falls diocese.
Father Forcelle, 63, was ordained for the archdiocese in 1980. In addition to St. Mark, he served at St. Olaf in Minneapolis. In 1984 he became the director of the Office of Youth Ministry for the Diocese of Sioux Falls and was incardinated into that diocese in 1988.
According to a press release from the archdiocese, the St. Paul Police Department on Sept….
By Liam Migdail-Smith
HARRISBURG – State House leaders plan to take steps next month to revive a proposal that would enable some people sexually abused as children to sue even if their window to do so has already closed.
House officials said Tuesday the plan is to add a retroactive provision back into a bill that would overhaul time limits for victims to take legal action.
“That’s where the members are and we’ll see how it goes,” said Stephen A. Miskin, a spokesman for the House’s Republican leadership.
At a Capitol press conference, state Rep. Mark Rozzi, a Muhlenberg Township Democrat and the measure’s chief proponent, vowed to continue his push for protections aiding victims abused in the past to be included in the bill.
“We cannot choose to help one group of victims and ignore another,” said Rozzi, a victim of childhood sexual abuse at…
CBS New York
PEARL RIVER, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A former Pearl River priest accused of sexual abuse has been permanently removed by the Archdiocese of New York.
As WCBS 880’s Monsignor John O’Keefe will never again function as a priest. A church official said the former president of Archbishop Stepinac High School will not be returning to his ministry.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan suspended O’Keefe from his duties at St. Margaret of Antioch in Pearl River in December after allegations of sexual abuse more than three decades ago surfaced.
The archdiocese declined to comment while the case and its findings were still referred to the Vatican.
When he was a teacher in the Bronx in the 1980s, O’Keefe allegedly abused a student in a Virginia hotel room and an upstate retreat house. He claims he is innocent.
Kate Hickey @KateHickey_ September 28, 2016
The Archdiocese of New York has confirmed that priest who has been accused of the sexual abuse of a minor on two occasions in New York and Virginia, over three decades ago, will never function as a priest again.
Monsignor John O’Keefe (71), formerly of Pearl River, NY and once president of a Westchester County Catholic high school, has been permanently removed from his ministry according to the lawyer for this alleged victim, Mitchell Garabedian. On Sunday afternoon a joint press release was issued by New-Jersey-based nonprofit Road to Recovery Inc, which helps victims of sexual abuse, and Garabedian. The Boston lawyer said he had been informed of this decision in August.
A spokesman for the Archdiocese of New York said they would not make any public statements until the process is completed. This would include bringing the matter…
The Morning Call
Steve Esack and Matt AssadContact Reporters
Of The Morning Call
Bishop: “The state attorney general’s office has subpoenaed our records on all possible abusers.”
A week after declining to address the question, Allentown Bishop John O. Barres acknowledged what his counterparts in five other Catholic episcopates already had: The diocese is being investigated by a statewide grand jury examining how church leaders handled decades of child sex abuse allegations.
In a letter to parishioners last weekend, Allentown Bishop John O. Barres confirmed that his diocese had been subpoenaed and is cooperating with the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office.
“As your bishop, I wanted to let you know that the Diocese of Allentown is cooperating with a statewide investigation being conducted by the office of the state attorney general looking at how six Pennsylvania dioceses handled allegations of abuse,” Barres wrote in a letter delivered to…
By: Tom Lyden
POSTED:SEP 27 2016
(KMSP) – One thousand pages of documents released by the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office and St. Paul Police detail the criminal investigation into the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis.
Those documents focus heavily on the conduct of former Archbishop John Nienstedt, who resigned 16 months ago.
Criminal charges in the case were dismissed in July as part of broad civil settlement with the Archdiocese.
The documents include a history of former priest Curtis Wehmeyer, who cruised bookstores and parks for gay sex before he was convicted of sexually assaulting two boys.
Concerns about Wehmeyer’s sexual compulsivity were raised before he even became a priest, when he was still in seminary. According to the documents, Nienstedt “was fond” of Wehmeyer, who even believed Nienstedt was “grooming” him for a sexual encounter.
In an August 2014 interview, Nienstedt dismissed the association.
Fios 1 News
The alleged victims of a former Pearl River priest and Westchester Catholic school leader accused of sexual abuse are resting a little easier today, knowing he has been permanently removed from his ministry
The allegations against Monsignor John O’Keefe’s go back for more than 30 years ago. He was suspended last year for allegedly sexually abusing a student on class trips in Virginia and Ulster County.
Two other male victims have come forward since then and their allegations were found credible…
“…To the point where the review board of the Archdiocese of New York was unanimous in its recommendation to Cardinal Dolan that Monsignor O’Keefe be removed permanently,” said Dr. Robert Hoatson, President of Road to Recovery.
Others say O’keefe’s alleged abuse started even earlier, when he was a guidance counselor at Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx.
[The Bishop of Rancagua has announced the dismissal from the clerical state of diocesan priest Carlos Manriquez, who served as pastor of La Merced in the town of Zuniga. In January 2015 the Catholic Church initiated a canonical investigation that convicted former priest who was accused to abusing a minor.]
El Obispado de Rancagua ha dado a conocer la dimisión del estado clerical de presbítero diocesano, Carlos Manriquez, quien se desempeñó como Párroco de la Parroquia La Merced, en la localidad de Zúñiga. En enero del año 2015 la Iglesia Católica inició una investigación canónica que encontró culpable al ex sacerdote.
Común era ver al Padre Carlos Manriquez, como uno más del pueblo de Zúñiga, comuna de San Vicente de Tagua Tagua. No había fiesta costumbrista o fiesta de la vendimia en la que no participara, ya que tras la respectiva misa a la chilena, se…
YONKERS – The archbishop of New York permanently removed a Pearl River priest from his ministry Tuesday because of sex abuse allegations.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan removed Monsignor John O’Keefe because of sex abuse allegations from 30 years ago when he was on the faculty of Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx during the 1980s. O’Keefe has been stationed as pastor of Saint Margaret of Antioch Parish in Pearl River since 2003, but was first removed in December.
by Maria Panaritis, STAFF WRITER
HARRISBURG – With only days remaining in the legislative session, officials said Tuesday the Pennsylvania House intends to rewrite and send back to the Senate a contested child sex abuse bill that would give victims the right to sue for decades-old abuses.
Sometime next month, lawmakers plan to restore controversial language that the Senate removed from House Bill 1947 – a provision that had been strongly opposed by the Catholic Church and the insurance industry for potentially exposing private institutions to enormous financial liability.
Rep. Mark Rozzi (D., Berks) announced the chamber’s plans at an hourlong Capitol news conference attended by Republican attorney general nominee Sen. John Rafferty Jr. (R-Mongtomery), other state lawmakers, and leaders of organizations that work with child sexual-abuse victims.
Rozzi said House leadership had pledged to reject the Senate’s amended version and try a second time to change…
BY STEPHEN ORYSZCZUK September 26, 2016
harity support worker for Jewish victims of sexual abuse has been nominated for the first national award for independent sexual violence advisors (ISVAs).
Yehudis Goldsobel, who works for the charity Migdal Emunah and who has exposed problems in the Jewish community, has been shortlisted for the LimeLight Award for Outstanding Achievement.
The advisors help victims understand the criminal justice process, explain what happens when reporting an offence to the police, and stress the importance and process of forensic DNA retrieval. Cultural sensitivities are crucial, and Yehudis is the only qualified Jewish IVSA in the UK and works across the entire religious spectrum of the Jewish community.