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Catholic Church braced for new child sex abuse scandal in Republic of Ireland

By Ralph Riegel

Published 09/05/2012

The Catholic Church is bracing itself for another potential child abuse scandal, with a file to be sent to the Republic of Ireland's Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) about allegations of physical and sexual abuse at a boarding school.

Colaiste an Chroi Naofa in Carraig na bhFear in Cork -- which was formerly run by the Order of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (OMSH) -- is the focus of a garda probe into abuse complaints lodged by almost 20 former pupils.

The complaints all relate alleged events at the school in the 1970s and 1980s.

Three men have been arrested as a result of the complaints.

The men -- all in their late 60s and 70s -- were released without charge.

A file will now be sent to the DPP within the next two months for a decision on what action, if any, will result.

The garda probe is running in parallel with a Health Service Executive probe into complaints levelled against the school.

A separate review is also being carried out by the church's own childcare protection watchdog body.

The National Board for the Safeguarding of Children (NBSC) launched a review at the request of the Order itself -- but its findings will not be released until the DPP has made a decision on what action follows the garda probe.

The NBSC completed its review last December into child protection practices at Carraig na bhFear.

Its probe examined practices at the school dating back to the 1960s. It is understood that the complaints received by gardai relate to allegations of both sexual and physical abuse.

Belfast Telegraph

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