Monday 20 November 2017

Everyone had a duty to report rape -- detective

Greg Harkin

A RETIRED garda detective who brought a paedophile priest to justice said Cardinal Sean Brady's response to the fresh revelations are "incredible".

Martin Ridge said Cardinal Brady's insistence that there were a lack of guidelines on dealing with clerical sex abuse in 1975 did not stop him from reporting criminal activity.

Mr Ridge, who helped the investigation into notorious child rapist priest Fr Eugene Greene, said: "I still find it utterly incredulous that anyone can say there were no guidelines on dealing with sex abuse when the law bans such despicable behaviour.

"It was the duty of anyone, regardless of who they were in 1975, to report rape and child rape to gardai."

Asked if he believed Catholic Church leaders who failed to inform gardai of crimes committed in the past should face sanction, he insisted: "The Government has spoken about making it a criminal offence for failing to report such crimes.

"My view is simple -- such behaviour is already a crime. Withholding information on any criminal offence is in itself a crime by law.

"No one has the right to immunity so that they can walk away from their responsibilities. The law is there for everybody," Mr Ridge told the Irish Independent yesterday

Mr Ridge featured prominently on Tuesday night's BBC documentary 'The Shame of the Catholic Church'.

In Co Donegal yesterday three victims of Greene were hailed as heroes, for speaking out on the BBC programme.

Greene was jailed in 2000 for 12 years for raping 26 boys. It is thought dozens of other victims never came forward.

He was released in 2008 and given €50,000 by people in Annagry, where he was from.

Irish Independent

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