Tuesday, September 2, 2008

More arrests over school 'pedophile ring'

A CATHOLIC brother and a former teacher have been arrested over an alleged pedophile ring at a Catholic boys school in Bathurst in central west New South Wales, police say.

The 66-year-old brother, from Marsfield in Sydney's north, and a 63-year-old teacher living in Brisbane were arrested this morning, police said.

Both were arrested over offences that police allege took place at St Stanislaus' College from the late 1970s to the early 1980s. No charges have yet been laid.

Police suspect dozens of boys may have been abused during alleged hypnotic "prayer" sessions at the boarding school.

The names of at least three former staffers of the college were listed on a police search warrant when detectives arrived at the school in July to search its archives.

Former priest Brian Spillane, 65, from Narwee in Sydney's south-west, was charged in May with 33 offences and last night had a further 60 charges laid against him after eight more alleged victims came forward.

As a result of additional information, police said their investigation had been expanded to two other secondary schools in Bathurst.

Currently, 615 boys attend St Stanislaus', of which 188 are borders.

St Stanislaus' principal John Edwards said last week he first became aware of the allegations "several years ago" and referred the claims to police.

He said the allegations included claims of late-night prayer and chanting sessions in which boys were sexually abused.


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