May 20, 2005

Priest convicted of child pornography hired by diocese


IOWA CITY (AP) --- A Roman Catholic priest who was convicted last year of using a church computer to download child pornography has been hired on to the maintenance staff at the Davenport Diocese, church officials say.

The Rev. Richard Poster, the former director of liturgy and publisher of the newspaper for the diocese, pleaded guilty in August 2003 to receiving pictures of children engaged in sexually explicit conduct. He was sentenced to one year in federal prison and was released earlier this year.

Although Poster remains a priest, he is barred from any ministerial duties pending a Vatican decision whether he should be defrocked.

Diocese spokesman David Montgomery said Poster was hired by a diocese review board to perform maintenance duties at the Diocesan Pastoral Center in Davenport. His employment includes several conditions, including direct supervision and no contact with children.

"Father Poster will be assigned job duties that are consistent with special conditions of his release, as required by his probation officer," Montgomery said. "He has direct supervision ... without access to computers."

Posted by kshaw at May 20, 2005 06:29 AM