Australia: Call for church sex abuse probe

2012-11-12 11:00

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Sydney - Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard was on Monday under growing pressure to establish a national inquiry into paedophile priests in the Catholic Church, following allegations abuse was hushed up.

An inquiry was announced last week to investigate claims by a senior policeman that the Church in Hunter Valley in New South Wales destroyed evidence and silenced inquiries, but calls are growing for an Australia-wide probe.

"I think the federal government needs to have a look at this and we need to take a national overview on these issues," government backbencher Doug Cameron told ABC television, describing the allegations as a "stain on our society".

Independent lawmaker Tony Windsor also urged Gillard to establish a royal commission, or national inquiry, saying the idea of an investigation limited to the Hunter Valley was "pathetic".

"It needs to be national... [anyone] can see that," he told the ABC.

Cardinal George Pell, Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, said he supported the Hunter Valley inquiry which he said had "enormous powers, very similar to those of a royal commission".

He added that the church had worked hard to stamp out abuse.

Cover-up

"Much of the public discussion is about how the church dealt with cases 20 or so years ago," Pell said in a statement released on Sunday.

"Critics talk as though earlier inadequacies are still prevalent."

It was unjust and inappropriate for anyone to suggest crimes were being - or had been - committed, without producing evidence, he added.

Pell was speaking after allegations by a senior police investigator that the Church had covered up sexual abuse of children in the Hunter Valley, north of Sydney, to protect paedophiles and its own reputation.

"I can testify from my own experience that the church covers up, silences victims, hinders police investigations, alerts offenders, destroys evidence and moves priests to protect the good name of the church," Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox said.

Gillard has said she will review the latest information and then make a decision but her Trade Minister Craig Emerson made clear the government was appalled at the reports.

"Whether it is within or outside of the Catholic Church, child abuse is just completely unconscionable and terrifying for the children and leaves enduring scars, usually for the rest of their lives," he said.

Read more on:    roman catholic church  |  australia  |  religion  |  child abuse
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
15 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Motoring
 

Thirty and still single? There’s hope!

Are you thirty and still single, without even a hint of a prospect on the horizon? Then read this!

 
 

Men24.com

SA’s Playboy Playmate of the year in action!
12 lies everyone accepts as fact
Hottie of the day: Charlotte
Breakup text goes viral and it’s hilarious!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

It may be hard to stay cool, calm and collected. Your emotions can get quite heated in the moment. You may benefit from finding a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.