Within the past week I have been approached by a young man who claims he was drugged and raped by a Northern Ireland priest within the past 3 years 🥵

I have told the victim, as I tell all victims, that I believe his story.

At the same time we ourselves do not have the right to find the priest guilty. That can only come after a police investigation and a court case.

The story has a strong ring of truth to it as the priest in question has a strong reputation for homosexual promiscuity and also a strong reputation for the abuse of both alcohol and drugs.

The young man was about to write to the bishop of the diocese involved and I strongly advised him not to do so.

I told the young man that the bishop would immediately spring into action and put in place a strong defence for the priest.

The priest involved is somewhat a “pet” for the said bishop.

I also told the young man that the bishop, the priest, the priests friends etc would also launch a strong effort to attack the victim’s reputation with accusations of being unstable, rejected and seeking monies.

My advice to the young man was to go straight to the police with a prepared statement that would form the basis of a formal police statement.

I have offered the victim to go with him to the police as a support person – or to find someone else to go with him if he preferred.

If needs be I will contact the appropriate police unit for him and make an appointment for him to talk to two professionally trained police officers.

After he informs the police I have advised him to write to the bishop and request that the diocese pay the cost of his counselling – with a counsellor with absolutely no church connections.

I can recommend such a counsellor to him as I have found an excellent one that I have referred other church victims to.

I have also advised him to retain a very good solicitor to protect his rights – again a solicitor with no church connections.

Again, I can recommend one to him if he needs it.