Monday, 26 September 2011

TV alert: Four Corners tonight alleges another Adelaide cover-up....

Four Corners tonight on the ABC apparently focuses on another Adelaide sex abuse case which it is claimed was covered up, to continuing denials from the Archdiocese...

**The program was about two cases of bus drivers abusing disabled kids, one current, one dating back twenty years but still alive due in some court cases against the Archdiocese alleging failure to take proper action to deal with the situation, resulting in extremely disturbed behaviour on the part of the victims.

The story

In the first case, a paedophile bus driver was working for a Catholic school, and managed to insinuate himself into the school proper as a volunteer. 

The scandal was that once discovered, it was claimed that both the police (who abandoned the investigation very quickly indeed, allowing a pedophile to continue in his activities elsewhere) and the Catholic education authorities/archiodiocese (who terminated the driver's employment, but even thanked him for his work in a dismissal letter than fails to mention the reasons he was sacked) failed to take appropriate action such as informing the parents of the abused or potentially abused children. 

As a result, the abused went untreated for over ten years until the parents discovered had happened when it was largely too late to help the children. 

Why bother going to the police in SA?

Part of the story was about the sorry performance of the South Australian (Adelaide) police in both cases. 

When charges were finally laid against the driver (but not his known paedophile accomplice), the paedophile was granted bail and fled to Queensland. 

When the Queensland police discovered where he was (again working with children), the SA police initially declined to press to for extradiction on the grounds that the case would be too hard to prosecute given the difficulties in using the evidence of disabled children.  It was only when the parents went public that action was suddenly taken.

The Archdiocese - a familiar sounding story?

The Archiodiocese came off looking worse for wear too.  Most of the events took place under the previous Archbishop, Leonard Faulkner.  But the discovery of what had happened and subsequent handling occurred under the watch of the current Archbishop. 

And the particular contemporary relevance to the Hepworth case is that instead of using the Towards Healing protocols, the Archdiocese, in the form of Monsignor Cappo, is claimed to have told the parents to lawyer up; followed up with out of the blue arbitrary payouts to parents without any discussion and investigation involving them; and generally refused to apologise for what happened or take an interest in the effects of what happened (storming out of a meeting with parents). 

Worse, Four Corners cited a letter which seemed to show a preoccupation with media management of the affair and enabling the (then) Archbishop to be seen as having clean hands.

Adelaide, oh Adelaide.  City of Australia's weirdest murders and other odd crimes, cesspit of homosexual misbehaviour and paedophilia.  Aided and abbetted by largely unfettered corruption.

And headquarters of the liberal Church establishment...

The Australian today reports on the Archdiocese's response: denial of any cover-up.

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