Monk’s sex abuse from 20 years ago hushed up

A PAEDOPHILE monk who abused two boys at a Roman Catholic public school evaded justice for more than two decades after monastic authorities and the parents of one of his victims hushed the matter up, a court heard yesterday.

Richard White, 66, was warned about his behaviour at Downside School after molesting a 12-year-old boy, but instead of reported him to police, the Benedictine abbot of the monastery attached to the school simply prevented him from teaching younger students.

White went on to indecently assault a second boy over several months in 1988 and 1989, when the victim was aged 12 and 13.

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White was jailed yesterday for five years, after Taunton Crown Court heard he lured the boy, who was interested in old books, to the monastery library. There he forced the boy to take part in sex acts, paying him 50p a time.

White was discovered after other pupils at the school near Bath saw the boy had extra money to spend at the tuck shop and he admitted how he had come by it.

But again, the police were not told. Instead, the former soldier, who the court heard was repressing his homosexuality at the time, was dismissed from his teaching post and sent to monastic communities across the country over the next 20 years, keeping him away from children.