Church hides evidence of priest’s ‘historic sexual abuse’ against altar boys
‘Paedophile Priest’ Vincent Ryan was released this week from prison after serving 14 months of a three year sentence for crimes against children.
The 78 year old had already served 14 years behind bars for the sexual abuse of 35 boys, aged six to 14, between 1972 and 1991.
One of Ryan’s victims even committed suicide.
The Newcastle-Maitland diocese Priest located in New South Wales, Australia, committed the crimes he was recently imprisoned for in the late 90s when he molested two altar boys.
Reports from the investigation also suggest the church knew about Ryan’s crimes and covered them up.
Shockingly he was even promoted in the 1980s to the position of parish priest despite them knowing of his crimes.
Detectives discovered the church’s cover-up of Ryan when they investigated Ryan in 1995 for sex-crimes spanning 20 years.
Two victims, who were victims of Ryan in their childhood, met randomly at a funeral in 1995 and decided to end years of pain and torment by going to detectives.
According to court evidence at the time by Senior Detective Troy Grant (of the Major Crimes Squad, the officer in charge of the investigation), the boys had been abused more than two hundred times during six years from the age of ten.
In court appearances in 1996 and 1997, Ryan pleaded guilty to multiple offences against young boys, including sexual intercourse by anal and oral penetration, plus multiples charges of indecent assault by genital touching.
By 1997, he had been sentenced to a total of 16 years’ jail, with a minimum of 11 years.
The abuse included anal and oral penetration and Ryan also provided the boys with pornographic material to sexually stimulate them.
Shockingly, after Ryan was sentenced, Bishop Michael Malone, who took over the Maitland-Newcastle diocese in 1995, said that if Ryan wanted to leave the church that would be ‘his decision and not ours.’
And after Ryan’s release in 2010, he was still ‘technically a priest’ and was provided accommodation by the diocese.
On 27th April 2016, Ryan appeared in Sydney’s Downing Centre District Court, charged with multiple sexual offences which were committed against a boy in East Gresford about 40km north of Newcastle, when the victim was aged between 13 and 15.
The charges included three counts of attempted intercourse with a child, three counts of indecent assault of a child, and three counts of gross indecency against a child.
Ryan pleaded guilty to three charges, including an act of gross indecency and attempting sexual intercourse with the boy. Following his guilty plea, the remaining charges were dropped.
At a pre-sentence hearing on 15 August 2016, the court heard extracts from a written statement by the victim, in which he said: “I could not say no to someone as important as a priest”.
The victim also felt that he couldn’t tell anyone about the priest’s offences as he would not be believed, particularly by his grandfather who believed Ryan “was a very good man”.
On 14th October 2016, the court gave Vincent Ryan a 15-month jail sentence which was suspended. The judge noted the 14-year sentence already served by Ryan for similar child sexual abuse that occurred in the same decade.
And now the 82-year-old was granted parole last week after a pre-release report stated “the offender has demonstrated excellent prison performance” and a sentencing judge found the offender has “positive prospects of rehabilitation” upon his release from Sydney’s Long Bay Prison.
Scott Hallett and Gerard McDonald, who gave evidence before Newcastle Court in 2016, in which they described how Ryan gave them wine as nine-year-old altar boys before subjecting them to horrific sexual abuse in the 1970s and 1980s in the NSW Hunter region, have described their pain and again.
Mr Hallett, 55, described being “overcome with anger” when he found out about Ryan’s upcoming release while holidaying with his wife and three children at Surfers Paradise.
“He is just an evil man, very calculating — I don’t think the guy even thinks he’s done anything wrong by pure fact that he is still able to be called a priest,” he said.
“I mean he has been convicted of that many crimes.”
“How can he walk around with a collar on when he is a convicted child abuser.”
Ryan’s whereabouts are not known, but he is banned from returning to the Hunter Region of Australia.
A spokesperson for Newcastle Bishop Bill Wright said the Catholic Church would not be financially supporting Ryan.