Final section of Cloyne Report to be published tomorrow

Final section of Cloyne Report to be published tomorrow

Serious failures in the handling of child sex abuse allegations against a priest in the Diocese of Cloyne are expected to be published tomorrow.

The final section of an inquiry will outline how former Bishop John Magee failed to deal with complaints in his Co Cork diocese against a cleric known as Fr Ronat.

Last July the Cloyne Report found Bishop Magee, a one-time Vatican aide and papal envoy, deliberately misled authorities and failed to report clerical abuse allegations as recently as three years ago.

He had resigned from duties in March last year as pressure mounted over the inquiry and his running of affairs in the diocese.

However much of chapter nine - the longest chapter in the report - was redacted over fears the material could prejudice ongoing criminal proceedings against Fr Ronat, a pseudonym for the priest concerned.

It is understood he has never been convicted in relation to a child-abuse matter.

The commission previously stated failures in the handling of complaints against Fr Ronat rested mainly on Bishop Magee and Monsignor Denis O'Callaghan, while at least three priests of the diocese also ignored complaints.

Allegations made to the diocese about Fr Ronat were not reported to the gardai when they should have been and were not reported to the health board/HSE by the diocese until 2008, it added.

"There were no proper church investigations of the complaints," investigators found, adding that a canonical process ordered in 1995 "was effectively stalled for 14 years and does not seem to have been completed".

Anyone affected by the report is urged to call the National Rape Crisis 24-hour helpline on freephone 1800 778 888.

A series of child clerical abuse revelations have rocked the Irish Catholic Church in recent years.

In May 2009 the Ryan Report revealed the church hierarchy and Irish Government covered up almost four decades of sexual abuse and beatings by priests and nuns on thousands of children in state care, with serial abusers moved from school to school.

Six months later the state-ordered Murphy Report revealed the Catholic hierarchy in Ireland was granted immunity to cover up child sex abuse among paedophile priests in Dublin.

The devastating level of abuse and cover-up in the Ferns Diocese was the first to be uncovered in 2005.

Just three weeks ago Ian Elliot, chief executive of the church watchdog, published six separate reports on child protection measures in Catholic dioceses across Ireland.

It revealed 160 allegations against 85 priests in six dioceses from 1975 but just eight convictions, with Raphoe - home to serial abuser Eugene Greene - feared to be the worst diocese in the country for abuse

It is hoped Mr Elliot's audit of all 26 dioceses in Ireland will be completed by mid-2012.

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