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Dublin: 5°C Wednesday 20 January 2021

Judge tells religious order to hand over priests' files to abuse victim

Mark Vincent Healy is taking a legal case against the Holy Ghost Fathers.

PastedImage-93525 Source: © Mark Vincent Healy/Not to be reproduced

ABUSE SURVIVOR AND campaigner Mark Vincent Healy must be given any files relating to complaints he made about priests by the Holy Ghost Fathers, a court has ruled.

Healy is suing the religious order, seeking aggravated damages for five years of sexual assaults against him by two priests from the age of nine.

Fr Henry Maloney pleaded guilty to abusing Healy and another boy when they were both pupils at St Mary’s College in Dublin between 1969 and 1973.

He was given a suspended sentence and was kept under strict supervision at Kimmage Manor.

The school has also accepted that the survivor was also abused by Fr Arthur Carragher in the 1970s.

In a hearing of the civil suit this week, Justice Paul McDermott granted a number of discovery orders, including the handing over to Healy of any files relating to any other criminal investigations against the priests, as well as their engagements and employment. This will include any transfers, the reasons for those transfers and who sanctioned those moves.

Healy is taking the case against the current Provincial Superior of the Irish Congregation of the Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost Fathers) who is acting in a representative capacity. The plaintiff alleges that the order is guilty of negligence and a breach of its duties because it failed to protect Healy while he was in their care.

While the defendant admits the Holy Ghost Fathers were negligent, he denies the victim is entitled to punitive, aggravated or exemplary damages.

Healy is also alleging that the school and the Archdiocese of Dublin knew Fr Maloney was a serial abuser before 1969.

He says he has been “permanently and adversely affected and continues to suffer from significant upset, distress and nervousness”.

Since securing a conviction against Fr Maloney, Healy has worked with other survivors and campaigns for survivors of clerical sexual abuse.

He became the first male survivor to meet Pope Francis, a landmark visit in July of this year.

Column: I became the first male survivor of Irish clerical sexual abuse to meet Pope Francis

Opinion: Without meaningful action, apologies to child abuse survivors are just words

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