Diocese of Raphoe reveals death of notorious child sex abuser

Eugene Greene was jailed for 12 years for 41 charges of sexual assault against 26 children

Fr Eugene Greene pictured celebrating Mass in a Donegal parish prior to his conviction for sexual abuse. Photograph:  Eoin Mc Garvey

Fr Eugene Greene pictured celebrating Mass in a Donegal parish prior to his conviction for sexual abuse. Photograph: Eoin Mc Garvey

 

Eugene Greene, one of the Republic’s most notorious clerical child sex abusers, died late last year, it has emerged.

News of Greene’s death has only become public now after the Garda informed the diocese of Raphoe on February 26th that he had died last November in Co Cork.

In a statement, Bishop of Raphoe Alan McGuckian said that up until that point, the diocese was not aware of his death. “Since he left prison in 2008, the diocese has not known his whereabouts,” said Bishop McGuckian.

“The news of the death of Eugene Greene has reopened the hurt of those whom he violated, their loving families and communities across the diocese of Raphoe.

“On behalf of the diocese I wish to express my profound sorrow and shame at the abuse which he perpetrated on innocent children. Once the diocese was made aware of Greene’s death, we immediately advised Tusla, the child and family agency.”

Greene was jailed for 12 years at Donegal Circuit Court in 2000 when he pleaded guilty to 41 sample charges of sexual assault against 26 children in Donegal parishes between 1965 and 1982.

He had been charged on over 100 counts.

The trial heard that many of his victims were altar boys, who suffered repeated assault and buggery. Sentencing him, Judge Matthew Deery noted some of his victims had turned to alcohol to try to erase the “horrific” pain of their childhood abuse.

Greene was dismissed from the clergy in November 2004 and released from prison four years later after serving nine years.

A native of the Annagry parish in Co Donegal, Greene was curate in Gweedore in 1970, thereafter serving in Killybegs, Lettermacaward, Gorthahork (where between 1976 and 1981 he abused 16 boys) Glenties, Kilmacrennan and Annagry.

His abuse came to light when he reported a man for trying to blackmail him.

In the subsequent investigation, the Garda uncovered the abuse.