A video showing the Dean of Melbourne's Catholic Church allegedly assaulting and verbally abusing a group of teenagers has appeared on video-sharing website YouTube.
The amateur footage shows Reverend Monsignor Geoffrey Baron lashing out at a group of skateboarders on the steps of St Patrick's Cathedral in Melbourne.
Reverend Baron appears furious with the teenagers for skating on church property in the footage, shot a year ago.
He swears and utters sexual and racist remarks.
"Move off the property you [expletive] fool. Move!" he says in the footage.
"You're the foreigner there - look at the slitty eyes, black hair."
The Vicar-General, Monsignor Les Tomlinson, saw the vision yesterday and defended Reverend Baron, saying his outburst was justified because the teenagers provoked him.
"If any human being is put under siege like that, they may well react in a way they wouldn't do," he said.
Monsignor Tomlinson says the fact that he is a priest makes no difference.
"Could you imagine yourself being subjected to the abuse and the pushing that he was subjected to and be confident that you yourself would not react?" he said.
He says Reverend Baron is currently away but they will discuss the incident when he returns.
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