Magazine article National Catholic Reporter

Australian Man Accuses Priest of Ritual Abuse

Magazine article National Catholic Reporter

Australian Man Accuses Priest of Ritual Abuse

Article excerpt

In 2002, the Melbourne, Australia, archdiocese paid a legal settlement to a man who alleged a priest abused him in satanic rituals. The alleged victim, a 56-year-old Australian who asked to be identified by the pseudonym "James T.," also claims he witnessed at least three brutal murders that took place during the rituals.

The man's claims became public May 26 when Australian crime reporter Gary Hughes broke the story simultaneously in the country's largest daily papers, all of which are owned by the News Corp media conglomerate.

James T. claims he was abused starting at age 11 in 1961 by Fr. Thomas O'Keefe, a priest of the Melbourne archdiocese. He said the abuse lasted about three years. During that time, he claims O'Keefe and others--most of whom he says he cannot positively identify--performed satanic rituals and killed at least three people.

James said he decided to contact the media after Fr. Gerald Robinson, an Ohio priest, was convicted May 11 of ritually murdering a Catholic nun. Leading up to the trial, allegations--still unsubstantiated--surfaced that Robinson was connected to a larger group of priests who practiced Satanism and murder in cult fashion.

According to Msgr. Les Tomlinson, vicar general for the Melbourne archdiocese, O'Keefe died more than 20 years ago.

An October 2000 letter written by Peter O'Callaghan, a lawyer and investigator for the Melbourne archdiocese, accepted James T. …

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