“Abbass will not face charges” and other similar articles

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The Casket (Antigonish)

Posted on April 14, 2012 by Corey LeBlanc [email protected]

Father Paul Abbass will not face charges in relation to an unspecified complaint made against him that prompted an investigation.

In a Canadian Press report late Friday evening, Cape Breton Regional Police confirmed that they have found no basis to pursue any criminal charges into a complaint made in February against a former employee of Talbot House – a live-in addictions recovery centre in Frenchvale, Cape Breton.

Abbass, who took a leave of absence from his position as executive director of Talbot House in mid-February – confirmed in an email to the national news organization that he was the person being investigated by police and that they have ended the probe.

In the email, Abbass said he was not ready to comment publicly about the allegation.

Cape Breton Regional Police spokeswoman Desiree Vassallo said, based on the information received when the allegation was made and what has been gathered since then, there was no basis for the pursuit of criminal charges at this point.

Talbot House, a non-profit facility which opened in 1959, has been the subject of an operational review since last December by the Department of Community Services, which includes a probe of financial oversight practices, programs and board management.

Results of that review have yet to be released.

In mid-February, the Talbot House board announced that Abbass, its executive director for more than 17 years, was asked to take a leave of absence while an investigation into a complaint against him was taking place.

That complaint surfaced during the operational review process.

At that time, Dr. John Gainer, Talbot House board of directors’ chair, said that they were informed of the complaint Feb. 2.

They asked Abbass to take a leave that same day.

When Abbass’ leave was revealed, the Cape Breton Regional Police Service confirmed that there had been a complaint made about a Talbot House employee.

Abbass, who had been serving as Diocese of Antigonish spokesperson and vicar general, was also been placed on leave from those and his parish responsibilities.

On March 7, the Talbot House board announced the facility had closed indefinitely, citing the resignation of a newly-hired interim director “rendered the provisional plan unsustainable” for continuing operation of the facility.

The Diocese of Antigonish owns the Talbot House building, but the independent board of directors for the non-profit centre makes the decisions regarding the facility.

Talbot House remains closed.

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Police clear priest of any wrongdoing

13 April 2012

By Staff The Canadian Press

SYDNEY, N.S. – Police have dropped their investigation into a complaint against a priest who headed up a rehabilitation centre for addicts in Cape Breton.

The Cape Breton Regional Police say they have no basis to pursue any criminal charges involving the former employee of Talbot House in Sydney.

Rev. Paul Abbass confirmed in an email that he was the person being investigated, and that police have ended the probe.

Abbass took a leave of absence from his position as executive director of the facility after an unspecified allegation surfaced in February.

The centre has since closed.

Abbass said he’s not ready to speak publicly about the allegation.

Talbot House’s board of directors didn’t reveal details of the allegation against Abbass, who served as the centre’s director for about 15 years.

The Roman Catholic priest was responsible for some counselling, the finances and overseeing the day-to-day operations at the centre, which treated men in their 20s and 30s who had a history of addictions.

Abbass also gave up his duties as the spokesman for the Diocese of Antigonish during the investigation.

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Police drop probe into complaint against C.B. priest

The Canadian Press

Date: Friday Apr. 13, 2012 4:34 PM ET

SYDNEY, N.S. — Police have dropped their investigation into a complaint against a priest who headed up a rehabilitation centre for addicts in Cape Breton.

The Cape Breton Regional Police say they have no basis to pursue any criminal charges involving the former employee of Talbot House in Sydney.

Father Paul Abbass confirmed in an email that he was the person being investigated, and that police have ended the probe.

Abbass took a leave of absence from his position as executive director of the facility after an unspecified allegation surfaced in February.

The centre has since closed.

Abbass said he’s not ready to speak publicly about the allegation.

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