PSNI investigates Fr Malachy Finnegan abuse allegations

Fr Finnegan taught at St Colman's College in Newry, Co Down. Credit: UTV

Police are investigating allegations of abuse by Father Malachy Finnegan.

A team has been set up with within the Public Protection Branch of the PSNI to “investigate the circumstances of abuse committed by Fr Finnegan”.

The priest, who died in 2002, worked for some time in the Diocese of Dromore.

“If you were abused by Father Malachy Finnegan, or abused by any other person at St Colman’s between 1967 and 1987, the investigation team would like to hear from you,” a statement from the PSNI said.

Detectives hope to establish and take action against any living offender from that time, and assess if there are any current child safeguarding risks.

They also want to determine if there was any other abuse of children committed by any other person at St Colman’s College during the time when Fr Finnegan worked there.

Police also want to establish whether there are any lessons to be learned from the way in which authorities acted to safeguard children.

They hope to ascertain when any authority first became aware of Fr Finnegan’s offending behaviour; what action was taken to ensure adequate safeguarding was implemented; and what information, if any, about his offending was reported to the police service at that time.

Information can be passed on via the non-emergency number 101.