Serving priest takes Catholic Church to court
A SERVING priest suing the Catholic Diocese of Lismore over allegations he was sexually abused as a child by another priest has had the matter adjourned after telling the NSW Supreme Court he's engaged a new lawyer, a court has heard.
The Catholic priest, who cannot identified because of a court order, has launched the action against the Catholic Diocese of Lismore and Mercy Support Limited for damages, a breach of duty and personal injury after he was allegedly sexually abused in the 1960s at St Joseph's Convent School, according to previous media reports.
The case is reportedly the first Australian case of a serving Catholic priest seeking compensation for alleged child sexual abuse by a priest.
At a brief mention in the matter in Sydney today, the priest asked the NSW Supreme Court for more time in the matter after obtaining new legal representation from Ballina-based lawyer Ben Crawford "this week".
"I kindly request a further adjournment of one month please," the priest, known as SL, told the court via audiovisual link.
In the brief directions hearing, lawyers for the defendants told the court that the adjournment was a "fait accompli" despite the matter having been "stood over on several occasions".
Justice Peter Garling adjourned the matter to the NSW Supreme Court on September 4.
*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.