Five Westminster paedophile rings probed by Scotland Yard, Three Current MPs And Three Lords Named In Westminster Paedophile Ring Dossier Handed To Police
December 23, 2014 Comments Off on Five Westminster paedophile rings probed by Scotland Yard, Three Current MPs And Three Lords Named In Westminster Paedophile Ring Dossier Handed To Police
Five Westminster paedophile rings probed by Scotland Yard
Claims emerge of a complex web of child abuse at the heart of government, as leading MP in campaign for justice hands list of 22 names to police
By David Barrett, Home Affairs Correspondent 21 Dec 2014
Police are investigating claims that up to five paedophile rings operated at the heart of Westminster with the involvement of “highly influential” politicians.
A Labour MP who has handed a dossier of evidence to Scotland Yard said he now believed the complexity of child abuse networks at the heart of government in the Seventies and Eighties had been seriously underestimated.
John Mann, MP for Bassetlaw, said it was “inconceivable” that police would not now arrest and interview some of the politicians he has named in a list handed to detectives earlier this month.
Mr Mann, who has spent months sifting evidence from members of the public, met Scotland Yard and handed over evidence on 22 politicians, including three serving MPs and three members of the House of Lords….
“I think the 22 names are all worthy of investigation by the police,” Mr Mann told The Telegraph.
“In my opinion the evidence against approximately half of them is very compelling….
Three Current MPs And Three Lords Named In Westminster Paedophile Ring Dossier Handed To Police
Lara O’Reilly Dec. 22, 2014
Scotland Yard has been handed a document that contains names of 22 high profile figures, including three serving MPs and three members of the House of Lords, alleged to be involved in the suspected Westminster paedophile ring during the 1970s and 1980s, The Daily Telegraph reports.
Labour MP John Mann has spent months sifting through hundreds of reports from the public about the historic sex abuse cases and has now handed a dossier to the police that suggests up to five paedophile rings were operating at the heart of UK government, each them involving at least one MP.
Of the total number involved — some of whom are now dead and some who are still alive, but not active in Westminster — 14 are Conservative politicians, five are from Labour and three were from other parties. Overall, 13 former ministers are named on the list.
Mann told The Sunday Times he also received allegations that an organised criminal gang and a celebrity were involved in the trafficking of young boys to abusers at Dophin Square in London, the block of flats prominent figures allegedly used as a venue for child abuse. He added that he is receiving new information all the time and that there could be many more names added to that list….
Priest cases show abuse issues persist, Files detail decades of abuse in Joliet Diocese, Memorial to victims of child abuse expected to be approved by planners – Irish Times
April 12, 2013 Comments Off on Priest cases show abuse issues persist, Files detail decades of abuse in Joliet Diocese, Memorial to victims of child abuse expected to be approved by planners – Irish Times
“The files, which Rudofski’s attorney shared with the Tribune after redacting the names of other victims, contain more than 7,000 records detailing how the diocese purposefully shielded priests, misled parishioners and left children unprotected for more than a half-century.”
Priest cases show abuse issues persist
Joliet Diocese has struggled to fulfill its public promise to better protect children, records show
April 07, 2013 By Stacy St. Clair, David Heinzmann and Christy Gutowski, Chicago Tribune reporters
When Will County sheriff’s deputies found the Rev. William Virtue sneaking into a private quarry in 1986, police records state that the Roman Catholic priest had blankets, two six packs of beer and a 10-year-old boy with him. He fled on foot when officers arrived, leaving the child behind.
Authorities took Virtue into custody after he returned to his car but later released him without charges because the boy’s mother said she had given her son permission to go swimming with the priest. Still, a deputy forwarded the report to Joliet Diocese officials who put it into Virtue’s personnel file — which already contained several accusations involving inappropriate behavior with underage boys.
The arrest report would remain tucked away for 20 years as Virtue continued to have contact with youths, and even after a seemingly repentant Joliet Diocese pledged in 2002 to improve its handling of sex abuse cases and held up guidelines approved by American bishops as proof of its commitment to transparency and victims’ needs.
Virtue’s personnel file, which contains 500 pages of letters, memos and reports, reflects the struggles the church faced since its public vow to better protect children after a bruising, national sex abuse scandal. Records obtained by the Tribune reveal several instances in which the diocese’s handling of abuse allegations contradicted those promises, adding to concerns about the overall efficacy of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People that U.S. bishops signed amid fanfare in June 2002.
For four years after that charter’s passage, Virtue continued to minister in the central Illinois Peoria Diocese, where he officially transferred at his own request in 1988. A Tribune review found no indication that Joliet Diocese officials re-examined his personnel records after the adoption of the guidelines, which call for a review of all priests….
Virtue was removed from ministry in 2006 by the Peoria Diocese shortly after a former parishioner at St. Mary Catholic Church in Mokena alleged the priest raped him in the 1980s when he was an altar boy, according to church records.
A review board deemed the allegation credible, a decision Virtue is appealing. He has denied any inappropriate behavior.
The diocese reached an out-of-court settlement with the alleged victim from Mokena, church records show.
A Tribune investigation, which included reviewing more than 7,000 pages turned over in a settlement in an unrelated case, uncovered cases in which the Joliet Diocese failed to recognize the severity of allegations, made little effort to find victims and misled the public, raising concerns about the church’s adherence to the charter’s spirit….
Files detail decades of abuse in Joliet Diocese
By Christy Gutowski, Stacy St. Clair and David Heinzmann Tribune reporters
March 21, 2013
The Joliet Diocese readily admitted that David Rudofski was sexually abused during his first confession at St. Mary Catholic Church in Mokena. It offered him an in-person apology from the bishop and more than six times his annual salary in the hope of putting a quick, quiet end to yet another ugly incident involving a priest.
But Rudofski wanted more than money.
The south suburban electrician wanted the diocese to truly pay for its repeated and, oftentimes, willful mishandling of sexual abuse cases involving clergy — and he insisted on a currency far more precious to the church than money. He demanded that the diocese settle its debt by turning over the secret archives it maintained on abusive priests and making them available for public consumption.
“What was I supposed to do? Take the money and run?” Rudofski said. “How would that help anybody else? If people don’t know how this was allowed to happen for decades, they can’t prevent it from happening again.”
The diocese, however, fought Rudofski’s efforts for more than a year before agreeing to turn over the personnel files of 16 of the 34 priests with substantiated allegations against them. It also issued a news release adding his alleged abuser, the Rev. James Burnett, to its still-growing list of accused clergy.
The files, which Rudofski’s attorney shared with the Tribune after redacting the names of other victims, contain more than 7,000 records detailing how the diocese purposefully shielded priests, misled parishioners and left children unprotected for more than a half-century. They also raise new questions about whether the church has been forthcoming about the number of local priests involved in the scandal and the percentage of clergy confronted with credible claims.
Though the Joliet Diocese’s botched handling of pedophile priests has been well-documented in recent years, the records offer the most complete portrait of the ineptitude and indifference that greeted the allegations almost since the religious district’s inception in 1948. The errors span more than six decades and involved three bishops, 91 places of worship and more than 100 victims.
Researchers and Roman Catholic Church officials have previously said that about 4 percent of priests nationally committed an act of sexual abuse against a minor between 1950 and 2002, with church officials claiming the rate of abusers within the priesthood is no different from that among other professions.
However, the files show that the Joliet Diocese — which includes parishes in DuPage, Ford, Grundy, Iroquois, Kankakee, Kendall and Will counties — had double or triple that percentage in the 1980s. In 1983, for example, more than 13 percent of priests serving in the diocese would later have credible abuse allegations leveled against them….
Rudofski was 8 years old when the Rev. James Burnett fondled him while the boy was making his first confession, documents indicate. Court records show he immediately told his mother that the priest had forced him to pull down his pants in the confessional, but she chastised him for making up an outlandish story on such an important day.
After his mother’s reprimand, Rudofski said he buried the memory and went on to have a normal childhood. He says it wasn’t until adulthood, when he struggled with nightmares about a caped man chasing him, that he confronted the past. He sued the diocese in 2007.
In an October 2006 affidavit for her son’s lawsuit, Patricia Rudofski said she scolded him for lying because she trusted her pastor. She said she forgot about her son’s allegation until years later, when another alleged victim accused Burnett of abuse.
“I was feeling horrible thinking about my son, thinking that I’m the one who told him to do whatever the priest said,” she said in the affidavit. “I mean, I’m feeling horrible, and I just — it was like a flashback. … Oh my God, he told me.”
David Rudofski, who received a personal apology from former Bishop Peter Sartain in 2010, said he hopes the newly released files will help his mother heal, as well….
Rudofski eventually settled for $600,000 and access to 16 priests’ personnel files.
Memorial to victims of child abuse expected to be approved by planners
Six entries for scheme at Garden of Remembrance have been shortlisted
The Irish Times Frank McDonald Thu, Apr 11, 2013
Dublin City Council’s planners are expected to approve the winning scheme for a memorial to victims of institutional abuse at the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Square after they receive further information on the €500,000 project….
The winners say their project “creates a fluid progression between the Garden of Remembrance, which commemorates those who died for the cause of Irish freedom, with a memorial dedicated to the young victims of abuse” in Irish institutions….
The proposal for a memorial was made in the Ryan Report, which said it should “spotlight an episode of significance in the history of the State [and] provide a point of reference with sensory significance that keeps alive the memory of those who suffered loss and pain”….
The site adjacent to the Garden of Remembrance was made available by the OPW for the project, which the memorial committee — appointed by Mr Quinn — said should be “an enduring symbol of lost innocence that inspires others to ensure the protection of all children”.
Mr Quinn said he believed the winning scheme would be “a testimony to one of the darkest chapters in our State’s history and … serve as a constant reminder that we must never let such horrendous crimes against children happen again”….
March 30, 2013 Comments Off on Sex Abuse Cases – Marci Hamilton, Capturing the Friedmans – The Victims speak out
Sex abuse cases: ‘I have a personal stake in this’ (Video)
Mar 28, 2013 Jeff Blumenthal Reporter- Philadelphia Business Journal
Last week, I interviewed Marci Hamilton, a lawyer representing victims in the Sandusky and Philadelphia Archdiocese child abuse scandals, as part of our Inside the Reporters Notebook series….
Hamilton’s pointed response explained what she says is a personal reason for her involvement. She is a professor at Cardozo School of Law and not a litigator by trade. But she said she was incensed on February 10, 2011, when a Philadelphia Grand Jury released a report following an investigation into allegations that two priests and a teacher sexually abused a 10-year-old boy at St. Jerome Parish in Philadelphia, and that another priest assigned to St. Jerome sexually assaulted a 14-year-old boy.
It was that report, Hamilton said, that caused her to contact her co-counsel Jeff Anderson, and say she wanted to participate in the litigation.
“I have a personal stake in this,” Hamilton said. “My children are Catholic. My daughter was baptized by a pedophile priest. I have family pictures with a pedophile at one of the most important ceremonies of a child’s life. So I am in it, yes, in Philadelphia. Because its the only way to make this Archdiocese to do the right thing.”
Capturing the Friedmans
At a time when child sexual abuse has been identified as a major public health crisis, the new film “Capturing the Friedmans” takes a skeptical attitude regarding believing children. The 1989, Arnold Friedman and his son Jesse plead guilty to multiple charges of sodomy and sexual abuse against young boys who took computer classes taught in the basement of their home. Jesse now claims he was wrongly convicted.
Our research into the case shows that the director of the film sacrificed truth in favor of creating artistic ambiguity. Clear evidence is omitted and facts are distorted. In addition, the film relies on popular but erroneous myths about child sexual abuse. As a result, uncertainty is created about the guilt of two confessed pedophiles — who are recast as victims — while the real victims — the boys and their families — are portrayed as untrustworthy.
In Their Own Words: Jesse’s Victims Speak Out
….The Film “Capturing the Friedmans” about a case of child molestation in Great Neck, Long Island has been nominated for an Academy Award. We are two of the victims of Arnold and Jesse Friedman writing to you, asking you to hear out side of the story, writing on behalf of the other victims and ourselves. We were abused, tortured, and humiliated by Arnold and Jesse Friedman in computer classes in Arnold’s basement. Many of us have physical scars from what was done to us; all of us have psychological scars. Although it has been 16 years, we live with the knowledge of these crimes every day of our lives. Some of us have had bad dreams, some of us slept with baseball bats under our bed for years for fear of reprisals. Many years ago, we thought we could not tell what was happening to us because we felt too guilty and embarrassed and were constantly threatened. Our parents thought Arnold was calling our houses so often because he was such a concerned teacher. His calls were to make sure we were not telling and to repeat the constant threats.
Sandusky Fits Sex Predator Profile, Report Says, Father Benedict Groeschel, American Friar, Claims Teens Seduce Priests In Some Sex Abuse Cases
September 1, 2012 Comments Off on Sandusky Fits Sex Predator Profile, Report Says, Father Benedict Groeschel, American Friar, Claims Teens Seduce Priests In Some Sex Abuse Cases
Sandusky Fits Sex Predator Profile, Report Says
By MARK SCOLFORO 08/30/12
HARRISBURG, Pa. — Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky has been recommended for designation as a sexually violent predator, a legal status that would require lifetime registration with authorities, according to a person who has read an assessment board’s report to a judge in the case.
The recommendation from the Sexual Offenders Assessment Board was disclosed to The Associated Press on Thursday by the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the report’s confidential nature….
Father Benedict Groeschel, American Friar, Claims Teens Seduce Priests In Some Sex Abuse Cases The Huffington Post By Meredith Bennett-Smith 08/29/2012
In a recent interview with the National Catholic Register, Father Benedict Groeschel, of the conservative Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, said that teens act as seducers in some sexual abuse cases involving priests….
In an interview with the National Catholic Register posted this week, Groeschel was asked about his work with the very conservative Friars of the Renewal, a breakaway order he founded 25 years ago. The conversation took an interesting turn, however, when the editor asked about the 78-year-old’s work with sexual abuse perpetrators.
“People have this picture in their minds of a person planning to — a psychopath,” Groeschel said. “But that’s not the case. Suppose you have a man having a nervous breakdown, and a youngster comes after him. A lot of the cases, the youngster — 14, 16, 18 — is the seducer.”
Pressed for clarification, the New York State-based religious leader explained that kids looking for father figures might be drawn to priests to fill an emotional hole in their lives.
Furthermore, Groeschel expressed a belief that most of these “relationships” are heterosexual in nature, and that historically sexual relationships between men and boys have not been thought of as crimes.
“If you go back 10 or 15 years ago with different sexual difficulties — except for rape or violence — it was very rarely brought as a civil crime. Nobody thought of it that way… And I’m inclined to think, on [a priest’s] first offense, they should not go to jail because their intention was not committing a crime.”
The fact that the interview was published, without comment, in the National Catholic Register was significant due to the publication’s affiliation with disgraced Legion of Christ religious order.
In 1995 the legion was part of a group of investors who saved the National Catholic Register from closing. (The Legion later sold the paper, which is now owned by the Eternal World Television Network.)The powerful clerical order was also part of one of the most damaging scandals, involving its one-time leader, the Rev. Marcial Maciel, the highest-profile Catholic clergyman ever to be accused of sexual abuse, according to Time magazine….
Groeschel is an influential voice in the American Dioceses and continues to maintain a high-profile in the church, writing several books and appearing weekly on a religious television network….
Update: National Catholic Register has taken down the interview and Groeschel has offered this statement:
I apologize for my comments. I did not intend to blame the victim. A priest (or anyone else) who abuses a minor is always wrong and is always responsible. My mind and my way of expressing myself are not as clear as they used to be. I have spent my life trying to help others the best that I could. I deeply regret any harm I have caused to anyone.