Bishop convicted of child porn not a pedophile, doctor testifies

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The Montreal Gazette

19 December 2011

BY ANDREW SEYMOUR, OTTAWA CITIZEN DECEMBER 19, 2011
Disgraced Catholic bishop Raymond Lahey is interested in sado-masochistic sex and addicted to Internet pornography but isn't a pedophile, a forensic psychiatrist testified Monday.

Disgraced Catholic bishop Raymond Lahey is interested in sado-masochistic sex and addicted to Internet pornography but isn’t a pedophile, a forensic psychiatrist testified Monday.

Photograph by: Mike Carroccetto, Canwest News Service

OTTAWA — Disgraced Catholic bishop Raymond Lahey is interested in sado-masochistic sex and addicted to Internet pornography but isn’t a pedophile, a forensic psychiatrist testified Monday.

Lahey, 71, has a homosexual interest in adolescent males and young men but presents virtually no risk of committing a hands on sexual offence, said Dr. John Bradford. However, the doctor acknowledged there was no way of determining his risk to commit a future child pornography offence.

“You can never be absolutely sure someone is not a pedophile, but on the basis of the material I reviewed I believe he is not a pedophile,” said Bradford, head of forensic psychiatry at the University of Ottawa and recently retired as associate chief of forensics at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre.

“Even if he was a hands on perpetrator, he is at an age where the risk of recidivism is very low,” said Bradford.

Bradford was testifying during the sentencing hearing for Lahey, who pleaded guilty in May to possession of child pornography. Lahey was arrested at the Ottawa airport in September 2009 after border agents discovered the illicit materials on his laptop computer. The materials included pictures of boys and adolescents as young as eight. Some were engaged in explicit sex acts. He also possessed several pornographic stories.

Lahey, who is himself gay and has been involved in a 10-year romantic relationship after a number of one night stands, imagines himself in a “submissive role” in his sado-masochistic sex fantasies, Bradford said.

“His role is to be submissive and subjected to humiliation and bondage,” said Bradford.

Lahey says he has never acted out on his fantasies and never committed any sexual offenses against a child, Bradford added.

Crown prosecutor David Elhadad questioned whether Lahey was trying to manipulate test results to present himself in the best possible light. Lahey scored highly on a test used to measure impression management.

Phallometric testing, which measures sexual arousal to images and audio tapes, also showed Lahey had an interest in adult females, even though he told the doctor he liked teenage boys and young adult men.

Lahey is facing a mandatory minimum one-year sentence, but could end up spending little to no further time behind bars.

Lahey’s lawyers, Michael Edelson and Solomon Friedman, are asking for two-for-one credit for the seven months Lahey has spent in jail since pleading guilty.

Lahey’s crime occurred before the Truth in Sentencing Act came into effect in February 2010, Friedman argued, entitling him to the enhanced credit. The Truth in Sentencing Act abolished the practice of giving an accused person two-for-one credit for so-called “dead time” before being sentenced.

Prosecutors intend to impose any additional credit for Lahey, who voluntarily surrendered himself into custody.

“This is a situation where after the legislation came in force, he purposely, out of his own choosing, put himself behind bars,” said prosecutor Mihael Cole.

Ottawa Citizen

aseymour@ottawacitizen.com

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Convicted bishop fantasized about gay S&M sex, but unlikely to offend, doctor testifies

The Ottawa Citizen

19 December 2011

BY ANDREW SEYMOUR, THE OTTAWA CITIZEN DECEMBER 19, 2011 7:59 PM
Former bishop Raymond Lahey arrives at the Ottawa Courthouse in this May 4, 2011 photo.

Former bishop Raymond Lahey arrives at the Ottawa Courthouse in this May 4, 2011 photo.

Photograph by: Chris Mikula, The Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA — A disgraced former Catholic bishop interested in gay sado-masochistic sex and addicted to Internet pornography shouldn’t spend another day in jail for possessing child pornography, his lawyer argued Monday.

Raymond Lahey, 71, should receive the mandatory minimum sentence of one year in jail, especially considering the relatively small number of images he possessed, a doctor’s finding he presents virtually no risk to the community and the fact his reputation has been left in tatters by the incessant and international media coverage of the case, said Michael Edelson.

And since Lahey’s offence predated a law abolishing enhanced double credit for time served in jail while awaiting sentencing, Lahey should also receive two-for-one credit for the more than seven months he’s voluntarily spent behind bars after turning himself in following a guilty plea in May, Edelson argued.

If granted two-for-one credit, Lahey could then be released with time served.

Crown prosecutors are seeking a sentence of 18 to 22 months jail followed by two years probation.

Lahey was arrested at the Ottawa airport in September 2009 after border agents discovered the illicit materials on his laptop computer. The materials included 588 child pornography pictures of boys and adolescents as young as eight. Some were engaged in explicit sex acts, including intercourse. Lahey also possessed several pornographic stories, including one featuring a character named Father Raymond.

Edelson said Lahey — who once negotiated a $13 million settlement for victims of child sex abuse by priests as the bishop of Antigonish, N.S. — has now become a “societal pariah” following his guilty plea to possessing child pornography for the purpose of importation.

Lahey has been “living a life of great deeds, good work and immense erudition, education and good character,” Edelson argued. He holds a Ph.D, studied at prestigious Cambridge University, and has made submissions in the Vatican.

But much like the protagonist in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, Lahey will also be forever marked for what he had done, Edelson argued.

“In light of the destruction to this man’s reputation, he wears the scarlet letter,” said Edelson. “C.P. are the scarlet letters he’s going to wear.”

Edelson said there was no evidence Lahey ever committed a “hands on” offence with a child, and cited noted forensic psychiatrist Dr. John Bradford’s finding that Lahey’s risk of sexually assaulting a child was less than one per cent.

Bradford testified earlier in the day that Lahey is a homosexual with an interest in photographs of adolescent males and young men but isn’t a pedophile and doesn’t need treatment.

A pedophile is someone who has sexual urges and fantasies about children under the age of 13 for at least six months.

“You can never be absolutely sure someone is not a pedophile, but on the basis of the material I reviewed I believe he is not a pedophile,” said Bradford, head of forensic psychiatry at the University of Ottawa and recently retired as associate chief of forensics at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre.

“Even if he was a hands on perpetrator, he is at an age where the risk of recidivism is very low,” said Bradford.

Lahey, who has been involved in a 10-year romantic relationship after a number of one night stands, imagines himself in a “submissive role” in his sado-masochistic sex fantasies, Bradford said.

“His role is to be submissive and subjected to humiliation and bondage,” said Bradford.

Lahey says he has never acted out on his fantasies, the doctor said.

However, Bradford acknowledged he gave little consideration to the fact Lahey was carrying a bag of sex toys when he was stopped by border agents or had travelled to countries known for the child sex-trade, like Thailand.

A Newfoundland man is suing Lahey civilly for allegedly fondling him repeatedly at the Mount Cashel orphanage, but the unproven allegations contained in the lawsuit were not considered in criminal court Monday.

Bradford said Lahey explained he was indiscriminately downloading what he believed to be gay adult pornography from the Internet and must have downloaded the child pornography there. Edelson argued many of the websites have provisos saying the models depicted are over the age of 18.

While Lahey was presented virtually no risk of acting out on his interests, Bradford also admitted there was no way of determining Lahey’s risk to commit a future child pornography offence.

Crown prosecutor David Elhadad also questioned whether Lahey was trying to manipulate test results to present himself in the best possible light. Lahey scored highly on a test used to measure impression management.

Phallometric testing, which measures sexual arousal to images and audio tapes, also showed Lahey had an interest in adult females, even though he told the doctor he liked teenage boys and young adult men.

Lahey also said he agreed with statements like “child molesters get longer sentences than they really should” and “children don’t say no to molesters because they are curious about sex and enjoy it.”

A gaunt-looking Lahey, who appeared to have lost a considerable amount of weight since going into custody, shuffled into the prisoner’s box in leg shackles. He sat quietly as Bradford testified.

Elhadad is expected to make his sentencing submissions Tuesday. The Crown is also expected to argue against Lahey receiving any additional credit for his time served.

“This is a situation where after the legislation came in force, he purposely, out of his own choosing, put himself behind bars,” said prosecutor Mihael Cole.

aseymour@ottawacitizen.com

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen

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Former Roman Catholic bishop in Ottawa court today for sentencing hearing

 Hearing follows Lahey’s guilty plea in May to ‘possessing, for the purposes of importation, child pornography in the form of graphic computer images’
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Priest says he told N.L. archbishop about porn accusation against LaheyFormer Roman Catholic Bishop Raymond Lahey.

  Metro Toronto

19 December 2011

JESSICA SMITH

Published: December 19, 2011 10:06 a.m.

Last modified: December 19, 2011 1:24 p.m.

A former Roman Catholic Bishop caught with child pornography at the Ottawa International Airport in September 2009 isn’t a pedophile, a forensic psychiatrist has told a court.

Raymond Lahey is however sexually attracted to male teens, said University of Ottawa forensic psychiatry chief, Dr. John Bradford, has examined Lahey.

Answering questions from Crown prosecutor David Elhadad Bradford testified that Lahey is not a pedophile and there is little to no chance the former bishop would commit a sexual or violent “hands on” offence if released.

Bradford said Lahey is homosexual and a hebephile, which means he is attracted to adolescent boys between the ages of 14 and 17. He also has significant sado-masochistic interests, said Bradford.

Bradford said that a visit by Lahey to Thailand is a concern because it is a location of “child sexual activity,” be he does not know that Lahey has ever had sexual contact with a child.

Lahey looks much thinner than when he appeared in court in May. His laywer, Michael Edleson, will be asking that he be given two-for-one credit for pre-sentence time served, a practice which the government recently ended with new legislation.

“He is entitled for a two-for-one credit because of the date of the legislation,” Edleson said.

Lahey asked to go directly to jail after he pleaded guilty in May to “importing” child pornography.

Lahey, 70, the former head of the diocese in Antigonish, was caught at the Ottawa airport in September 2009 with photos of boys involved in sexual acts.

Those images included sex acts performed on and by pubescent boys, according to an agreed statement of facts read in court by Crown prosecutor David Elhadad.

 

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