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Paedo sexually abused children as young as 4-months-old

ST. CLAIR COUNTY, MI -- A 27-year-old man faces multiple charges after authorities claim he sexually abused young children and made por...

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sabato 9 settembre 2017

"A haven for child abusers"

Allegations of historical sexual abuse have emerged against a fourth teacher at Trinity Grammar, raising concerns there was a cluster of predatory employees at the Melbourne private school in the 1970s.

Four former employees – a senior teacher, an assistant chaplain, a boarding tutor and now, a science teacher – were all at the Anglican school at the same time.
The school is yet to acknowledge the extent of the abuse, but current headmaster Michael Davies urged survivors to come forward.
There is no evidence of a paedophile ring, but there are worrying links to two of the claims.
The most recent claim alleges that shortly after an incident – which cannot be detailed for legal reasons – with the school's science teacher when he was 15, the former student was abused by Christopher Howell, the senior teacher.
Now in his 50s, the former student says the incident and subsequent abuse sent him on a downward spiral, and left him feeling like "the teachers were all in it together".
He raised the allegations with the school in 2015 before going to police. Investigators were unable to pursue the claim because the science teacher had died. Instead they took a statement about Howell, who was alive at the time.
Howell, who taught at the school for 40 years, took his own life days before he was due to face court last year on an indecent assault charge. Five former students have come forward to say they were molested by him.
The science teacher ran outdoor education camps and was known by some students to watch boys in the shower. One former student remembers his classmates being ordered to get into the sleeping bag with the teacher to stay warm.
In the second claim, another survivor says when he was 15, he and his parents tried to report Howell's abuse to his boarding master Leslie Wiggins. He said Wiggins told them the allegation was "nonsense" so they reported it to then headmaster John Leppitt. Mr Leppitt, the survivor said, told his parents their child needed to be disciplined. 
It can now be revealed a former teacher has provided a statement claiming Wiggins, the school's assistant chaplain, was moved in 1975 because of an abuse allegation.
Known by students at the time as a "fiddler", Wiggins was convicted in 1991 of indecently assaulting three boys on the Mornington Peninsula. He died several years ago.
Rightside Legal lawyer Michael Magazanik, who is preparing legal action against Trinity, says the allegations show there was a culture of cover-up.
"Trinity, like Geelong Grammar, was a haven for abusers," Mr Magazanik said.
"Many lives have been damaged as a result. We know of at least two suicides thought to be linked to abuse at the school. It's time the school faced up to just how bad things were."
The fourth alleged child abuser, who was a boarding house tutor, is facing a criminal trial accused of sexually assaulting five boys, two who were from Trinity, in 1975 and 1978.
A fifth teacher, John Hamilton Buckley, was jailed in 2015 for abusing boys in the 1980s at Geelong Grammar's junior school Glenmorgan in Toorak. He taught at Trinity for one term in 1986 as a replacement for a teacher on long service leave.
Trinity's current headmaster, Dr Michael Davies, said any allegations of abuse at the school were deeply concerning and very upsetting.
"I would like to reassure the Trinity community that we treat these matters with the utmost seriousness and have strict and clearly communicated policies around reports of abuse," Dr Davies said.
"If abuse was reported in prior years and not acted upon or appropriately documented then that is in total contravention of policies and procedures which are now rigorously adhered to in the school."
Legal action focuses on Howell and the former science teacher. Another firm, Maurice Blackburn, is representing two other complainants who say they were abused by Howell and the former boarding tutor.
The allegations against Howell, who rose to the position of assistant headmaster, caused deep divides. Many simply refused to believe the claims.
"It has torn apart the community," a friend of Howell's said. "So many have great memories of Chris, but clearly there are some who don't ...Tragically, there is a stain on his career."
The ruptures were exposed when Dr Davies and his deputy Rohan Brown paid tribute to Howell's "extraordinary legacy" after his death, despite knowing he'd been charged. "To many, including those penning this letter, Chris Howell was, is and always will be the best educator we have known."
The letter led to the president and treasurer of the Old Boys board to resign in disgust. One of the survivors said he had never been more revolted with something than that letter.
"The vision of Howell was enough to make me sick, but what the school was saying about him; it was a lie and the school knew it was a lie and it protected him. The school has broken faith with every parent, every child."
The school apologised more than 18 months later in an email sent out late last month that referenced Howell and the boarding tutor without naming them.
"We continue to encourage anyone who is upset or who has grievances or concerns to contact me personally at the school or, if appropriate, the relevant authorities," Dr Davies wrote.
"We will offer counselling and support to any Old Boys who have been impacted and will continue to fully and openly cooperate with the relevant authorities. As a school we are sincerely sorry for any abuse that has taken place in our community."


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