February 28, 2005

Payout in G-G sex cover-up


By Greg Roberts
March 01, 2005

THE woman whose claims of child sex abuse led to the downfall of former governor-general Peter Hollingworth is to be offered a six-figure compensation payment by the Anglican Church.

Beth Heinrich, 65, identified herself for the first time last night, appearing on the ABC's Australian Story to reveal details of the abuse.
Mrs Heinrich claimed anonymously in 2002 that Dr Hollingworth - as archbishop of Brisbane - ignored her claims that bishop Donald Shearman, now 78, sexually abused her at a church boarding school in the central-western NSW town of Forbes in the mid-1950s.

Countering the argument at the time, the then governor-general suggested - on the same ABC program - that she had initiated sexual contact as a 14-year-old.

Dr Hollingworth told Australian Story he believed what happened between Bishop Shearman and Mrs Heinrich "was not sex abuse". "Quite the contrary, my information is that it was, rather, the other way around," he said.

Posted by kshaw at February 28, 2005 11:08 AM