The allegations began in the late 1980s, but the victims claim that the child molestation occurred nearly 20 years before. These types of accusations are serious and can lead to a lot of consequences that can impact a person both personally and professionally. The allegations mentioned above involved a former priest and several boys who attended the church school.
One of the boys, now an adult, stepped forward with the allegations after the priest's niece accused the priest of molestation. This particular case is just one of several involving Catholic churches that have been filed in New Jersey as well in as neighboring states.
The priest had been working at the church and school for an unknown amount of time when the boys say the sexual assault began. According to them, it continued for several years. It wasn't until 1989 that the church first received complaints that the priest was involved in criminal conduct. At that point, the priest was forced to leave his role in the church. He was not allowed to return in a ministerial role but instead was given an administrative position. He passed away two years ago.
It is unclear whether the priest had been criminally charged after the boys came forward with the allegations of sexual abuse. In other similar cases, criminal charges such as rape had been filed against the accused individual.
For this priest, the accusations completely changed the course of his life. He was unable to continue working in the profession of his choice, one that no doubt required education and passion. Like him, others who are accused of a crime face these types of challenges. Even without a conviction, allegations can destroy a person's reputation and relationships with loved ones.
When faced with criminal charges, it is important to speak with someone who can help figure out your next step. This can help protect your rights and freedom.
Source: Reuters: "Trenton diocese pays $1 million settlement in sexual abuse case," Dave Warner, Aug. 17, 2011.