Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I'm no danger says abuser ex-priest

A former Roman Catholic priest exposed as a serial child sex abuser has claimed he poses no "threat or danger to children".

Bill Carney was accused by the Murphy report, which was published in Ireland two years ago, of abusing at least 32 children.

Carney, who was ordained in 1974 and defrocked in 1992, left Ireland and was traced to Spain before settling in Northleach, near Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.

Earlier this year the Gloucestershire Echo newspaper published an article revealing he was living in the home of his ex-wife, close to a children's playground.

The newspaper published a letter Carney had written in response to that article.

"Your article depicts me as a threat or a danger to children. Nothing could be further from the truth," he wrote.

"For over 30 years now I have been a recovering alcoholic and the only mark against my name is three points on my driving licence for doing 38mph in a 40mph area. In these 30 years there has not been the slightest suggestion of anything that would indicate that I am a danger to any child."

The report by the Commission to Inquire into the Dublin Archdiocese, which was headed by Judge Yvonne Murphy, said Carney had pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault in 1983 against two altar boys.

"He was one of the most serious serial abusers investigated by the commission," the report stated. "There is some evidence suggesting that, on separate occasions, he may have acted in concert with other convicted clerical child sexual abusers."

Carney has never been tried for any of the allegations made in the report.