Tyrone priest Canon Patrick MacEntee in court charged with historic sex offences

UTV.com [Belfast, Northern Ireland]

July 31, 2023

By Mike McFadden

A priest has appeared in court accused of three sexual assaults on males in the 1980s.

Canon Patrick MacEntee, 69, from Esker Road in Dromore, County Tyrone, was brought before a district judge at Enniskillen Court.

He’s accused of indecently assaulting a male between 1980 and 1981.

He’s further accused of two indecent assaults on a second male on dates between 1988 and 1989.

It is believed the alleged offences relate to the priest’s time in County Fermanagh.

In court, he spoke only to confirm he understood the charges against him.

A detective told the court police believe they can connect the accused to the charges.

Canon MacEntee was released on his own bail of £500 and ordered not to contact the alleged injured parties, nor to have any contact with under-16s.

Canon MacEntee – who hails from County Monaghan – is a senior cleric within the Catholic Diocese of Clogher.

He is a former president of St Michael’s College in Enniskillen where in the 1990s he taught Religious Education and sat on the Board of Governors.

In 2001, he left Saint Michael’s College and was appointed the parish priest of Saint Davog’s Church in Dromore.

Four months ago, he took a period of leave from Saint Davog’s to address what Clogher Diocese described as a “safeguarding matter”.

At the time, the Diocese said it had robust safeguarding policies and practices in place and that it took seriously all allegations or suspicions of abuse.

It’s understood Canon Patrick McEntee will remain on leave while these allegations are investigated.