Police Probe New Priest Abuse Claims

Times & Star [United Kingdom]
January 27, 2006

A FORMER Workington priest jailed for sexually abusing young boys will be re-interviewed by town detectives following a new complaint.

The news comes less than two weeks after Father Gregory Carroll, 66, had his four-year sentence shortened by a year by the Criminal Appeal Court.

He was sentenced in September for abusing 10 boys under the age of 15 while he was teaching at the junior house of Ampleforth College in North Yorkshire from 1973 to 1983.

For the first time, allegations are under investigation that he molested a boy in Workington, where he was sent to from Ampleforth by church authorities, which had removed him from teaching.

The man, who lives in the Home Counties, claims he was between eight and 10 when the abuse took place at various locations, including our Lady and St Michael's RC Church and Carroll's bedroom.

He said: "It's taken a long time for me to come forward and there were lots of reasons for that. I am pleased that I have. It's a huge weight off my mind and everyone has ben so supportive from the police to my closest family and friends.

"When I found out his sentence had been cut by 12 months, it made me feel sick. He was put in a position of trust and he abused that position on a number of occasions and he should be punished for it.

"Three years is not enough for what he put them through.

"If he is a holy man like he has preached for years, then he should be a man and admit it all and do his time.

"It also angers me that a senior official at Ampleforth knew about what he was capable of and still sent him to Workington. This official does not deserve to be called a holy man and should have to answer to me, my family and the people of Workington."

The man, who still has family in Workington, has spoken at length to detectives in his home area. They have now passed the investigation on to Workington.

The head of West Cumbria CID, Detective Inspector Andy Carter, said this week: "We are in receipt of a complaint and a full investigation is under way.

"At some stage, we need to speak to Gregory Carroll but to comment further on the direction of the investigation would be counter productive."

The Ampleforth offences were effectively swept under the carpet, to allow Carroll to quietly move out of teaching and into the priesthood in Workington, where he worked among an unsuspecting community from 1987 until he retired in 2001.

His Ampleforth offences and those of another former Ampleforth teacher, Fr Piers Grant-Ferris, came to light when North Yorkshire Police began investigations in 2004.

Grant Ferris had also been moved to the priesthood in Workington after he was identified as one of a nest of paedophiles on the Ampleforth staff who preyed on boys for nine years.

He was known to the pupils under his care as 'pervy Piers' - yet in Workington he was appointed chaplain to St Joseph's RC High School, where he took confessions from children in private. He was priest here between 1975 and 1989.


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