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'I hate you': victim's message in court to Catholic priest jailed for sexually abusing six children

Thu 14 Mar 2019
By Press Association

A Catholic priest has been jailed for nine years and 11 months after being found guilty of abusing six children in the 1970s.

Francis McDermott, 75, abused six victims, some as young as 10, in London, Norwich, and High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, between 1971 and 1978, Aylesbury Crown Court heard.

 

Two of his victims read statements during Thursday's sentencing hearing which recounted the "devastating impact" he had on their lives.

One said: "I hate you. There is no one to blame but you," while another described how her family had all been "married and baptised by a disgusting monster".

Judge Catherine Tulk told McDermott he had "turned down so many opportunities to admit your wrongdoing".

She noted the irony that one of the central tenets of the Catholic Church was confession.

The offences were reported to the church on two separate occasions but were not passed on to police after McDermott denied the allegations, the court heard.

McDermott was found guilty of 18 counts of historic child sex offences following a trial.

Trevor Burke QC, defending McDermott, said the defendant had been a Catholic priest "all his adult life" but said "for a period of seven years where he had completely lost his way".

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