Siblings: Priest Abused Them Decades Ago

United Press International [New York]
February 7, 2006

NEW YORK, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Five brothers and sisters who grew up in New York City in the 1950s and 1960s say they were sexually abused by a Roman Catholic priest who was a family friend.

But they kept the secret for years, even from each other, Newsday reports. Dick Regan, now a retired New York City police officer, started talking to his siblings after a newspaper article about the sale of church property jogged his memory.

Now, the family has sued the diocese of Rockville Center on Long Island, seeking damages for the harm inflicted by the Rev. Daniel Babis.

Babis died in 1978 after serving as a priest in Rockville Center and the diocese of Brooklyn-Queens. He was transferred frequently by his superiors.

The Rev. Thomas Doyle, a priest who has investigated sexual abuse cases for the Vatican's Washington office, told Newsday that the pattern of frequent moves would raise red flags now.

"If a man is transferred every year, it's very unusual, and it indicates that there's a serious problem somewhere," Doyle said.

Another family and a woman have come forward to allege being molested by Babis.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.