ANOTHER priest is behind bars for sex crimes against children while teaching at the notorious Salesian College, Rupertswood.
Former students say a sickening club of sex abusers roamed its grand halls and manned its dormitories at Sunbury in Melbourne’s northwest for decades, from as early as the 1950s.
Frank de Dood was for a short while in the 1980s in charge of monitoring the dormitories, and like dorm masters before him took his chance to abuse a young boy as he slept.
The child was one of five boys de Dood has admitted abusing between 1978 and 1983.
Four of the students were abused at the Salesian’s Rupertswood college where de Dood taught between 1981 and 1986.
One student was abused at the Salesian campus at Chadstone.
At the County Court today de Dood was jailed for three years, with a non parole period of 20 months.
He joins a raft of his former clergy colleagues from the school including Julian Fox and David Rapson who are both serving significant jail terms.
Those priests terrorised students with sexual and violent abuse that was rife throughout decades of the school’s dark history.
The school, which de Dood attended himself as a student, has been dubbed a “school of horrors”.
De Dood, 64, pleaded guilty to six indecent assault charges against boys aged 11 to 16.
He abused boys at random, sometimes as punishment and sometimes to “teach them about love”.
He told one victim that no one would believe his complaints and he would be expelled if he told anyone about his abuse.
Judge Susan Cohen said de Dood exploited vulnerable youths and their families who had put their trust in him as a priest and teacher.
“All of these incidents clearly involved serious breaches of trust by you,” she said.
“Adolescent boys are generally at a vulnerable stage of life ... you may have been relatively sexually immature yourself ... but as a priest carried a level of respect and authority with each of these boys.
“You were also a teacher at the school and that role carries an extra level of authority and trust,” she said.
Judge Cohen despite his pleas of guilty, de Dood had not fully accepted responsibility for his actions.
“I accept you feel some genuine remorse for the suffering of your victims ... but it is outweighed by your regret for the consequences to yourself personally,” she said.
At least six former staff from the Rupertswood college, including principals, have now been jailed for child sex crimes.
Salesian officials have admitted to paying out thousands of dollars to victims.
In 2011, former Salesian head Fr Frank Moloney told the Herald Sun that De Dood had not had contact with children for many years:
“He works as a farmhand and doing maintenance at our property in Lysterfield,” he said.
But he was also sometimes loaned out to parishes as a stand-in priest.
But several sources have told the Herald Sun de Dood was in frequent contact with children at Lysterfield, where the Salesians ran retreats.
In 2004, the Australian chapter of the Salesians — the world’s second-largest Catholic order — was engulfed in scandal after it was alleged local superiors knowingly moved priests accused of sexual assault across state borders and even abroad to evade authorities.
One, who cannot be named for legal reasons, became principal of a college in South Australia.
Julian Fox, a former Rupertswood principal, became a Salesian rector in Fiji before being moved to Rome.
It is understood moves are now underway for de Dood to be laicised.
Salesian priest Frank de Dood jailed for child sex crimes at Rupertswood, Sunbury SHANNON DEERY, Herald Sun August 7, 2017