"It's Been Traumatic, I Can't Put It into Words He Was a Devious, Clever Man"

Sutton and Coldfield Observer
October 29, 2010

A VICTIM of a "serial rapist" priest has been speaking of the abuse he suffered at the hands of his tormentor who was jailed last week 50 years after the offences.

The man, now in his 60s, was aged just 12 when he was first targeted by former clergyman Richard Robinson, who trained at Sutton's Oscott College.

He was one of four West Midlands men who presented Birmingham Crown Court with written statements during Robinson's trial.

It ended last Friday with Robinson's conviction on 21 counts of sexual abuse against children.

The victim, who was systematically abused for four years, said of the trial: "It has been traumatic, I can't put it into words. It's been terrible I'm still very emotional now.

"I'm not a bad person. I don't hate the man. But he had to be sorted out. I've lived with it for years.

"For years, I thought it was a one-on-one situation and I wasn't prepared to do anything about it. But when I found out there were other victims, it was terrible."

Robinson, aged 73, abused children he met while working in churches across the West Midlands between 1959 and 1983.

His victim said: "This man was a very clever, devious man.

"He was like a brother. He was a hero."

Another person abused by Robinson said: "This man is a paedophile. He is a serial rapist. For days, I have sat in the court and he has walked 2ft away from me, but he hasn't looked at me. But [the day he was convicted] he looked me in the eye for the first time in 49 years. He knows who I am and yes, I am very, very angry.

"I know there must be other victims in this country and they need to get the courage to come forward."

Last year, Robinson was extradited from America, where he fled in the 1980s.

The case against him focused on six victims, but he was tried on offences against just four.

As Robinson prepared to spend the rest of his life behind bars, it emerged that another three men claiming to be victims of the former priest had come forward to police but declined to take part in the court process.

Officers said this week they were certain that more than nine men's lives had been blighted by Robinson's abuse.

Detective Sergeant Harry May said: "I have no doubt there are more victims, not only in this country but in America."

Detective Chief Inspector Steve Bimson said: "In this investigation, the first complaint was made in 1985.

"As the investigation started, Robinson moved to the States and legalities, at that time, stopped us from bringing him back.

"Over the following years, there were many letters from the church to Robinson, asking him to come back, but clearly Robinson didn't want to return to the UK.

"His abusive activity started in the late 1950s. He became a trusted member of the community and he then built on that by joining the priesthood."


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