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Wednesday 1 October 2014

Child abuse priest fails in his sentencing appeals

Brian Kavanagh

Published 31/07/2014 | 02:30

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Former priest Tony Walsh Photo: Courtpix
Former priest Tony Walsh Photo: Courtpix

Former priest and serial child abuser Tony Walsh has failed in appeals against separate sentences of 16 years and 15 months imposed on him for the "depraved" rape and sexual abuse of young boys.

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Walsh, who was known as the "Singing Priest", is serving a 16-year sentence imposed on him in 2010 for the rape and abuse of three school boys.

In 2012, Walsh, formerly of North Circular Road, Dublin, had 15 months added to this sentence for abusing two other boys.

In a written judgement delivered yesterday by presiding judge Mr Justice John Murray, the Court of Criminal Appeal said that with regard to the first appeal the offences were of the "utmost gravity", but even that description did not do justice to the "appalling nature" of the offences committed against young boys.

With regard to the second appeal, the court noted that the Walsh had "used and abused his position of spiritual trust" as a priest to assault the boys.

Walsh (60) had pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to two counts of indecently assaulting a male in a west Dublin church between November 1978 and April 1979.

He pleaded guilty to a further charge of indecently assaulting a male in a west Dublin school between January 1984 and December 1985.

Walsh was convicted by a jury in November 2010 of a further nine counts of indecent assault and five counts of buggery on the third boy between June 1, 1979, and June 30, 1983.

Irish Independent

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