The Catholic Church has accepted as substantially true allegations that a Melbourne priest took part in satanic rituals during which a number of murders occurred.
The Melbourne Archdiocese paid $33,000 to the man who made the allegations as compensation for the repeated sexual and physical abuse he suffered as a child at the hands of the priest after investigating claims.
The Archdiocese’s independent sexual abuse investigator, barrister Peter O’Callaghan, QC, described the details of the ritualised murders and sexual abuse provided by the victim as “extraordinary”.
“. . . but I have no reason or justification for doubting his credibility,” Mr O’Callaghan said in a letter to the victim’s lawyers in 2000. Earlier during a formal interview with the victim, Mr O’Callaghan said he was satisfied the man was telling the truth.
“I see no reason why I shouldn’t accept what you say,” he said.
The Melbourne Archdioceses Vicar General, Monsignor Les Tomlinson, said that Mr O’Callaghan advised Victoria Police about the allegations when he first learned of them in 1999. He was told that the victim had already notified police that he had been sexually abused and was a witness to murder.
In a sworn statement given to the Archdiocese, the victim said he was first abused by the priest in Melbourne in the early 1960s, when he was serving as an altar boy at the Sacred Heart Church in Sandringham and attending a Catholic school.
The abuse continued for three years.
In his statement the 56-year-old victim, who wishes to remain anonymous, gave details of at least three deaths – a young woman, a young man and a child – that occurred during the satanic rituals over a number of years.
Two victims had their throats cuts and a third was killed with an axe. Animals were also killed during the ceremonies.
Victoria Police has yet to respond to questions about the case.
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