Catholic Church sexual abuse cases

Catholic priest jailed for abusing six children

Francis McDermott
South Beds News Agency

A Catholic priest has been jailed for nine years and 11 months after being found guilty of abusing six children in the 1970s.

Francis McDermott, 75, abused six victims, some as young as 10, in London, Norwich, and High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, between 1971 and 1978, Aylesbury Crown Court heard.

Two of his victims read statements during today's sentencing hearing which recounted the "devastating impact" he had on their lives.

One said: "I hate you. There is no one to blame but you," while another described how her family had all been "married and baptised by a disgusting monster".

Judge Catherine Tulk told McDermott he had "turned down so many opportunities to admit your wrongdoing".

She noted the irony that one of the central tenets of the Catholic Church was confession.

The offences were reported to the church on two separate occasions but were not passed on to police after McDermott denied the allegations, the court heard.

McDermott was found guilty of 18 counts of historic child sex offences following a trial.

Trevor Burke QC, defending McDermott, said the defendant had been a Catholic priest "all his adult life" but said "for a period of seven years where he had completely lost his way".

Australian cardinal is jailed for sexually abusing two boys

He’s the highest ranking Catholic clergyman to be convicted of child sex offences.
The Australian Cardinal George Pell, has begun a six-year jail term today for sexually molesting two boys. He was once the Vatican treasurer. Lisa Flynn represented the father of one of Cardinal Pell's victims who died before seeing his abuser brought to justice. She was in court when the sentencing was announced:

(Picture: Cardinal George Pell. Credit: EPA/Daniel Pockett)
George Pell: Cardinal's first police interview released
Newly-released footage shows Cardinal George Pell in 2016 describing abuse allegations as "rubbish".