Ex-school principal goes on trial for sexual abuse of nine boys

Christian Brother Paul Dunleavy (82) taught at St Colman’s Abbey Primary School, Newry

The charges against Christian Brother Paul Dunleavy span a ten-year period between 1969 and 1978 when he taught at St Colman’s Abbey Primary School in Newry. File image: Reuters/Christian Hartmann

The charges against Christian Brother Paul Dunleavy span a ten-year period between 1969 and 1978 when he taught at St Colman’s Abbey Primary School in Newry. File image: Reuters/Christian Hartmann

 

A former primary school principal is to stand trial accused of sexual offences against nine boys, a judge ordered on Monday.

Christian Brother Paul Dunleavy appeared before Belfast Magistrates’ Court to face a total of 41 charges.

The 82-year-old, with an address at the Province Centre, Griffith Avenue in Dublin, allegedly committed multiple counts of indecent assault and gross indecency towards a child. He is also accused of attempted buggery and inciting gross indecency.

The charges span a ten-year period between 1969 and 1978. At the time, he taught at the now-closed St Colman’s Abbey Primary School in Newry.

During a preliminary enquiry hearing he confirmed that he understood the allegations against him. Prosecutors submitted that he had a prima facie case to answer.

District Judge Fiona Bagnall granted an application to have the accused returned for Crown Court trial on a date to be fixed, the Courts Service confirmed. He was released on continuing bail of £500 until those proceedings get underway.