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Cardinal 'ashamed' of mishandled sex abuse claims

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor admitted he mishandled sex abuse claims against a priest. Credit: Anthony Devlin / PA Archive/PA Images

Former Archbishop of Westminster Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor has admitted he is deeply ashamed of the way he handled sex abuse allegations concerning a priest in the Catholic Church in the 1980s.

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor disclosed how, as the Bishop of Arundel and Brighton, he allowed priest Michael Hill to become the chaplain of Gatwick Airport despite Hill confessing to him that he had abused young boys.

Speaking during a Q&A session at the Hay Festival in south Wales, the 82-year-old cleric said he sent Hill for therapy before moving him to a new parish after being given assurances he would have no contact with children.

However, while at his new airport post, Hill would go on to sexually assault a young man with learning difficulties who had missed a flight.

I'd like to say something I wouldn't have said 20 or 30 years ago - think first of the victims and how important it is to listen to them and their story, the anger and the pain.

I knew child abuse was wrong and removed him from the parish.Now, under the new regulations, he would go to the social services and the police automatically.

But I don't think we were aware of the addictive nature of paedophilia and the terrible damage that's done to the victims. Now I know much more about that.

– Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor

Hill was jailed in 1997 for a string of attacks and then again for another five years in 2002 after disclosing fresh abuse during a sex offender treatment programme


Corfu deaths: Family's 'shock' at ITV News revelations

The family of two children killed by carbon monoxide poisoning on holiday in 2006 have expressed their shock that the two men found responsible for the deaths were still working in the holiday industry until earlier this week.

In a statement, the family said:

We are shocked that the manager and an electrician who were convicted for our children’s deaths were still as of this week working in the hotel industry in Greece.

We ask that Thomas Cook, the Louis Group and other Tour Operators acknowledge that this latest blow for the family is simply unacceptable and cannot be repeated. British holiday makers need to be reassured by the Travel and Tourism Industry that they will be kept safe on holiday.

– Family of Christi and Bobby Shepherd

They also reiterated calls for the bungalow where the children died to demolished and replaced with a playground dedicated to their memory.


Police confirm 'controlled detonation' of WWII bomb

Police confirm 'controlled detonation' of Wembley bomb. Credit: PA

Police in Bedfordshire have confirmed the "controlled detonation" of the WW11 bomb that was found in Wembley.

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