January 26, 2005

Witness Testifies at Ex-Priest's Trial


AP Legal Affairs Writer

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) - A man who says he was molested as a boy by Paul Shanley, the now-defrocked priest at the center of the Boston Archdiocese sex scandal, tearfully testified Wednesday that Shanley would pull him from catechism classes and rape and fondle him in the church pews, the confessional and the rectory.

His voice cracking, a hand over his face, the 27-year-old man also said Shanley would wait for him in the bathroom with the lights off. He recalled seeing Shanley silhouetted against the hallway light, his hands outstretched in a priestly pose.

``He'd unzip my pants,'' the accuser said. ``Sometimes he would kneel down and try to teach me how to perform oral sex.''

He said the abuse began at age 6 and continued until 1989, when he was 12.

Shanley's lawyer has said the man made up the story to cash in on the multimillion-dollar settlement paid to victims of the Boston sex scandal.

The testimony came on the second day of Shanley's rape trial, one of the few cases in which prosecutors have been able to bring charges against priests accused of molesting boys decades ago.

Posted by kshaw at January 26, 2005 03:05 PM