January 25, 2005

Opening statements delivered in case against defrocked priest

Boston Herald

By Associated Press
Tuesday, January 25, 2005

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Opening statements were being delivered Tuesday in the child rape case against defrocked priest Paul Shanley, one of the most notorious figures in the clergy sex abuse scandal that engulfed the Boston Archdiocese.

The case that first involved allegations related to four alleged victims has since been whittled down to a single man who claims he was raped in the 1980s by Shanley when he was a priest at St. Jean's parish in Newton.

A jury of eight men and eight women will consider the case, which is expected to last about two weeks in Middlesex Superior Court.

Shanley faces three charges of raping a child and two charges of indecent assault and battery on a child. The maximum sentence would be life in prison.

Prosecutors said they planned to call New Hampshire bishop John McCormack to the stand Tuesday as one of their first witnesses. McCormack investigated allegations of sexual misconduct as a former lieutenant to Boston's Cardinal Bernard Law and was expected to testify about Shanley's employment history with the archdiocese.

Posted by kshaw at January 25, 2005 02:19 PM