Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Probe over school 'abuse' claim

Justice Minister Alan Shatter said none of those facing allegations are working with children

An inquiry is being launched over child protection concerns at a boarding school after a Senator used parliamentary privilege to name a priest as an alleged abuser.

The joint Health Service Executive and garda probe centres on the protection and welfare of children who had attended Colaiste an Chroi Naofa in Carraig na bhFear, Co Cork, while it was run by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart.

Justice Minister Alan Shatter and Children's Minister Frances Fitzgerald said none of those facing allegations are working with children.

"Both Ministers have been acting in cooperation with regard to this matter and call on anyone who has information of relevance to furnish it to the HSE or an Garda Siochana," a joint statement said.

The statement said the ministers were limited in what they could publicly state as they did not want to cause difficulties for the inquiry.

"In the context of serious allegations that have been made they, however, believe it is important to state that they have been assured that none of those against whom allegations have been made are currently engaged in any work activities which bring them into contact with children," it stated.

Fianna Fail senator Mark Daly last month used parliamentary privilege in the Seanad to name a priest as an alleged abuser.

The inquiry was initiated by HSE National Director Gordon Jeyes and Detective Superintendent John McCann of the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Investigation Unit at the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

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