child molestation

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Los Angeles Catholic church files show decades of sexual abuse

Published August 2, 2013 by misty534

Catholic priests pray

 

Court-ordered release of documents reveal what Catholic orders knew of sexual abuse by priests, brothers and nuns

In therapy sessions, the priest confessed to shocking details he’d kept hidden for years: he had molested more than 100 boys, including his 5-year-old brother, had sex with male prostitutes, and frequented gay strip clubs.

The admissions of Reverend Ruben Martinez are among nearly 2,000 pages of secret files, unsealed Wednesday, which regard priests, brothers and nuns accused of child molestation while working in the Los Angeles archdiocese.

The papers, released under the terms of a $660m settlement agreement reached in 2007, are the first glimpse at what Catholic religious orders knew about the men and women they posted. Several dozen more files are expected to be released by fall.

The documents refer to 10 priests or brothers and two nuns, all accused in civil lawsuits of molesting children; among them, the accused had 21 alleged victims between 1950 and 1980. The release included documents from the Oblates, the Marianists, the Benedictines and two orders for religious sisters.

That some files don’t reflect the alleged abuse doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, said Ray Boucher, lead attorney for some abuse victims. “Much of this went unreported. You’re talking about kids that were terrorized and frightened in so many different ways, with no place and no one to turn to.”

At more than 500 pages, Martinez’s file is among the most complete, and it paints a devastating picture of a troubled child who joined the priesthood to satisfy a domineering father.

The archdiocese settled eight lawsuits over Martinez’s actions in 2007, but had little in its own files, though he worked in its parishes for years.

His order file, however, includes therapy notes and psychiatric evaluations, and reveals years of effort – and tens of thousands of dollars – the Oblates spent trying to cure him of his self-admitted paedophilia.

In a 1993 psychiatric report, one of several such evaluations, the priest admitted to molesting children. In the documents, Martinez says he stopped “direct sexual contact” with boys after a mother complained to a pastor in 1982, and that he stopped touching boys altogether after another complaint in 1986.

In 1991, he received five months of inpatient psychological treatment from a center in New Mexico that specialized in treating troubled priests.

Upon his release, Martinez was assigned to a tiny parish in the remote town of Westmorland, in the far southeastern corner of California. While there, he would drive miles to San Diego to pick up male prostitutes, according to his file.

He was removed from parish ministry in 1993, enrolled in a sex offender program and sent to work at the order’s California headquarters in Oakland. For the rest of his career, he filled administrative roles.

Calls to his order, the US Province of the Oblates, and emails to the attorneys of the accused were not returned.

Carolina Guevara, a spokeswoman for the archdiocese, said orders are expected to make sure priests they present for ministry don’t have any history of sex abuse.

One man who sued over Martinez’s abuse told the Associated Press that the priest molested children in 1972.

“He would have us wrestle each other and then wrestle with him, which means we’d get down into our skivvies and he’d take pictures of us. He was always taking pictures,” the man said. “I just remember the smell of the old Polaroid flash cubes. He would go through them like crazy.”

The man received a settlement in 2007 from the archdiocese. Martinez was never charged criminally; most of the alleged abuses weren’t reported until years later.

The man said Martinez always had a group of young boys around him and would take them to see R-rated movies. One summer day, he recalled, the priest took six boys to a local amusement park, but stopped on the way at an apartment where another man lived. Martinez and the man went inside with one of the boys and left the other five in the car for several hours. When the trio came back, the boy was sobbing and didn’t stop for hours.

In 2003, Martinez was moved to the Oblates’ offices in Washington DC, where he worked answering phones and in the archives. There, his files show, he was reprimanded for making jokes that offended several women and, later, for looking at sexually suggestive pictures of young boys, and for downloading a floppy disk filled with “references to topics dealing with the gay lifestyle”. He also marched in a gay pride parade.

“I don’t know who else has time to monitor him, or to what ‘safe’ place we could assign him,” the Rev Charles Banks, director of personnel for the Oblates wrote in an exasperated memo in 2003.

The file shows that Martinez was sent to the Missouri retreat home for troubled priests in 2005. In a psychiatric assessment dated that same year, Martinez said he hadn’t had sexual contact with a child in 23 years and had learned to control his impulses. The same report notes that at age 13, Martinez sexually molested his little brother and went on to molest “about 100 male minors” – a detail also included in several other therapy evaluations.

“It has not been easy to face what I did, to admit it and to talk about it with others,” Martinez wrote to the order’s provincial in 2006. “I have had to deal with depression, self-hatred, the inability and unwillingness to forgive myself, and the desire and tendency to isolate.”

 

 

Tunbridge Wells paedophile Allan Martin’s hospital order ‘a sledgehammer to crack a nut’

Published July 18, 2013 by misty534

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A predatory paedophile who was jailed for molesting a boy in a church toilet has been detained indefinitely under a hospital order after he breached a sexual offences prevention order by downloading indecent images of children.
Allan Martin’s lawyer had submitted that such an order was draconian and “a sledgehammer to crack a nut”.
But two psychiatrists told Maidstone Crown Court they believed the 24-year-old pervert, who has Asperger’s syndrome and autism, was a danger to boys and posed a very high risk of re-offending.
Making the order under the Mental Health Act, Judge Charles Macdonald told Martin: “You are going to hospital. You are going to be treated. It will be better than being in prison. Do not fear it. Good luck.”
Martin, previously of Woolley Road, Tunbridge Wells, was locked up indefinitely for public protection in February 2011, with a two-year minimum, for sexual assault, attempted sexual assault and breaching his sexual offences prevention order (SOPO).
The sentence was overturned on appeal and a determinate term of two-and-a-half years was substituted, with release at the halfway stage.
Appeal Court judges ruled the open-ended sentence might have seemed an “attractive option” to protect the public, but it was “not available” to now-retired Judge Andrew Patience QC.
Martin was at a talent contest at a Maidstone church when he offended again and breached the terms of a SOPO imposed after committing two other sexual offences.
He molested one boy and tried to assault another. He later declared: “Sometimes I want to go out and really hurt someone. I feel like going out and grabbing someone off the street and hurting them in a way I know is wrong.”
Judge Patience described Martin’s fantasies as “evil”.
In the latest case, Martin was caught with four indecent images at the lowest level of one, downloaded on a Nintendo games console.
Judge Macdonald said he was satisfied Martin had mental disorders and a “sexual preference disorder of paedophilia”.
“This is not a case where any custodial sentence would be beneficial to him or provide protection to the public as that of a hospital order,” he said.
Martin, he added, had a close interest in male underwear and a preoccupation with offending in public toilets. He fantasised about killing young victims.
Kent online

Paedophile Nichola Mezzadri jailed for molesting six-year-old girl in Downham

Published May 7, 2013 by misty534

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A PAEDOPHILE who sexually assaulted a six-year-old girl while he was at a house party in Downham has been given a 30-month prison sentence.

Nichola Mezzadri was arrested after his victim told the police she had been sleeping in her mother’s bedroom when a man came in and touched her.

The assault by the 27-year-old man only ended when her father entered the room.

He was found guilty of sexual touching at Woolwich Crown Court on January 8 and sentenced at the same court on Friday (May 3).

Mezzadri, originally from Milan and living in Walthamstow, was not known to the victim’s family but had been invited to the party by a close friend of theirs.

Investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Pete Thomas said: “The victim has shown immense courage throughout this trial, which was no doubt very harrowing and distressing for both her and her family.

“I would like to commend the young victim in this case and her parents, without whom the conviction could not have been achieved.

“My team worked tirelessly on this case.

“Their professionalism and tenacity has resulted in a dangerous individual being sent to prison.

“I hope this conviction will provide reassurance to all our communities that we will relentlessly pursue those who commit these dreadful crimes against children.”

 

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