Former priest David Perrett pleads not guilty to 139 charges of child sexual assault

Australian Broadcasting Company

Nov. 1, 2019

By Caitlin Furlong and Cecilia Connell

A former Catholic priest from north-west New South Wales accused of assaulting 40 victims across eight parishes and nearly 30 years has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

David Joseph Perrett, 82, faced Armidale District Court on 139 charges relating to sexual offences against children.

Now an elderly man, the accused appeared frail in court, sitting in a wheelchair and using a hearing loop for assistance.

He was accompanied by two supporters.

The court heard the former Catholic parish priest is accused of assaulting the victims over a period of time stretching from the 1960s to the mid-1990s.

The offences allegedly took place when the children were aged from three years to their mid-teens.

Thirty-seven of the complainants are men and three are women.

The charges relate to a range of offences including assault, acts of indecency, buggery, carnal knowledge, and maintaining an unlawful sexual relationship with a child under 16.

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