Brady seeks 'just resolution' of case

 

Catholic Primate of All Ireland Cardinal Séan Brady has today said he wants a "just resolution" to a legal case involving an alleged victim of the paedophile priest Father Brendan Smyth.

The cardinal said in a statement this afternoon that he had asked his legal representatives to engage with the solicitor of the complainant “with a view to progressing the case.”

The man is suing Dr Brady in his capacity as Archbishop of Armagh and as the Catholic representative in Ireland in a case that is due before the High Court. The legal action began in 1997.

The man claims he was sexually assaulted on a number of occasions by Smyth in Dundalk in the early 1970s.

The individual alleges the church called an ecclesiastical court to deal with the allegations once they were first raised and assured him that Smyth would never be placed in a situation where he could abuse other children.

According to Dr Brady's defence, which is dated February 2009, the cardinal argues there are no grounds for suing him and asks for proof that the alleged acts of abuse took place. He is also said to deny having called the ecclesiastical court or of offering assurances to the alleged victim.

RTÉ, which has seen the primate's defence, reported this morning that the solicitor for the alleged victim was "incredulous" at hearing expressions of remorse over clerical sex abuse.

The broadcaster said the man's solicitor wrote to Dr Brady's solicitors recently, calling for the defence to be withdrawn as it was compounding the wrongs inflicted on his client.

In his statement, the cardinal said that as the matters are the subject of ongoing legal proceedings it would be inappropriate for him to offer any further comment at this time.

Earlier this month, the cardinal apologised for his handling of complaints against Smyth and expressed shame that he has not always upheld the values that he professes and believes in.

The apology came after it emerged Dr Brady conducted canonical inquiries into allegations of child sex abuse by Smyth 35 years ago, involving two young people, without reporting the allegations to civil authorities.