Catholic Church Hands ‘Abuse Dossier’ To PSNI

Solicitors for the Catholic Church have handed over files to the PSNI which is carrying out a major inquiry into historic allegations of child sex abuse by priests.

Security Minister Paul Goggins has revealed that church solicitors have supplied police with details of victims and allegations and that an investigation file had been sent to the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) for consideration.

Mr Goggins has disclosed limited details about the inquiry in answers to a series of questions in the House of Commons by David Simpson, the DUP MP for Mid Ulster.

The minister said the church had “co-operated fully” with the PSNI investigation.

But Mr Simpson says Mr Goggins failed to clarify whether the Catholic church has handed over its full files on the alleged abuse cases.

In his latest written question on the issue, Mr Simpson asked whether the information submitted to the PSNI by solicitors for the church was in the form of full details or in the form of summaries of allegations.

Mr Goggins replied: “Solicitors acting on behalf of the Roman Catholic Church provided PSNI with details regarding the victims and their allegations.

“This information permitted PSNI to make contact with those victims and establish the full facts of each case.

He added: “For legal reasons no further comment can be made at this stage.”

Mr Simpson told Sunday Life: “What would concern me is if full disclosure was not forthcoming from church authorities. The minister failed to confirm whether or not the full files or only summary files were handed over.

“If it was the case that only summary files were made available to the police, then they would not have access to details about any internal investigation that was carried out or of any questions put to and answers given by people against whom allegations were made.”

Mr Simpson added: “Surely the lesson previous notorious cases is that a minimalist approach simply won’t work.”