Midland Priest Faces Charges

Midlands 103

August 11, 2008

An Offaly priest is one of two who could face new charges of stealing money from their parishes in the US.

65 year old Fr. Francis Guinan, from outside Birr, along with 80 year old Fr. John Skehan from Johnstown, Kilkenny had the charges against them dropped earlier this year.

The two priests were previously accused of stealing millions of dollars from their parish in Delray Beach, Florida earlier this year but the charges were dropped.

However prosecutors recently re-filed a first degree felony charge of grand theft of over 100,000.

The case was sidelined, after a legal tussle between the defence lawyers and jugde Sandra McSorley.

At that time State Attorney Barry Kirscher dropped the charges but vowed to re-file them.

Police in Delray Beach charged Fathers Skehan and Guinan in September 2006 with stealing offertory money from St. Vincent Ferrer Catholic Church.

Allegations later arose that Fr Skehan and later Fr Guinan had mishandled more than 8m over decades.

The alleged thefts go back 40 years.


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