March 09, 2006

More than 100 Dublin priests suspected of child sex abuse

Irish Independent

Thursday March 9th 2006

As the Irish government prepares to launch an inquiry into child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church, new figures from the Dublin area show that more than 100 priests have been accused of sex abuse.

The report, from the Archdiocese of Dublin, records 350 accusations of abuse against 102 priests since 1940. The number of accusations is likely to grow in the course of the 18-month government inquiry, since the Church has encouraged victims who have never registered complaints to come forward.

The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, said the archdiocese was publishing its findings before a commission is formed later this month to investigate the handling of abuse.

The Church has been criticised in recent years for under-reacting and has faced allegations it is more concerned with protecting itself than full disclosure and tackling the problem head-on. The bishops are now adamant that every possible effort will be made to assist the authorities and to deal properly with any fresh cases. Since almost 3,000 priests worked in Dublin over the last 66 years, the Church's figures suggest that roughly one in 30 of these has been the subject of allegations.

Posted by kshaw at March 9, 2006 07:05 AM