Church had no obligation to tell police about sex allegations: judge

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04 January 2013

The Canadian Press

Published Friday, Jan. 4, 2013 6:46AM EST

Michel Bastarache

Michel Bastarache

Former Supreme Court justice Michel Bastarache is shown in this file photo. (Jacques Boissinot / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

MONCTON, N.B. — A former Supreme Court justice says the Catholic church had no obligation notify police of sex abuse allegations against two more priests.

Michel Bastarache informed the Archdiocese of Moncton of the allegations.

They surfaced during a reconciliation and compensation process that Bastarache was conducting for alleged victims of sexual abuse involving another priest.

Two lawyers who have represented victims of abuse by clergyman say the diocese should have gone to the RCMP.

One of the lawyers, Robert Talach, says any other institution would have done so.

But the archdiocese countered that it’s up to the alleged sex abuse victims to come forward.

Bastarache agrees, saying the Church can’t report accusations to police when it doesn’t have any details or know the identities of the alleged victims.

Bastarache says he can’t give the church the names because he’s bound by a confidentiality agreement, but he’s urged the individuals to go to police.

The archdiocese quietly suspended the two priests last year


Comments posted on CTV website

11:32 AM

Michel Bastardache is clearly one of the reason why our courts are so defunct…he was part of the machine! A “former SCJ” as he should have to spend weekends with coach James when he is feeling randy for having the logic he does.

Les from Alberta


Jan. 4, 2013

9:46 AM

These people who try to hide this type of criminal activity are no better than the people committing the acts of sexual abuse. Not trying to protect innocent children is one of the greatest crimes anyone can commit. This story is absolutely unbelievable and a disgrace to everyone.



Jan. 4, 2013

9:23 AM

This article exactly the reason why moat people do not believe that this organization has any business preaching morality to anybody.

Martin in Ottawa


Jan. 4, 2013

9:03 AM

Quietly suspended? QUIETLY SUSPENDED? I have no words.. stunned, absolutely stunned. The only good thing here that I read is “former”. These people should go to JAIL PERIOD. Religion – there is nothing worse.

Mike from Ab


Jan. 4, 2013

8:54 AM

It is a shame that the Catholic church continues to have these “skeletons in the closet”. With case after case, it is no wonder that people are skeptical of the church. I would also say that their attempts to hide or cover up these acts are despicable. Followers look to the church for guidance, but when what they see is deceit and criminal acts on the children that are entrusted to them, it is enough for anyone to lose their faith.



Jan. 4, 2013

8:32 AM

And that is the ongoing arrogance of the Catholic Church.

Real Christian


Jan. 4, 2013

8:31 AM


So the Supreme Court says that the Catholic Church can do what they want to who ever they want. Inquisition anyone.



Jan. 4, 2013

7:14 AM

oh, so we are going to leave it to the church to do a formal investigation, to determine if any had occurred? Of course they historically the church and other institutes/programs have an exemplary track record of exposing the truth about these allegations. Oh, just suspend them and keep it quiet, that will make everyone happy. you know, for an establishment that is supposed to promote peace, Harmony and uphold the “12 cardinal rules”, is one of the most corrupt, bottom of the barrel seedy, slimy and untrustworthy collection of criminals who shroud themselves with the cross. Makes me sick. Wake the hell up people.

6 Responses to Church had no obligation to tell police about sex allegations: judge

  1. jjlmb says:

    I am a victim of one of them.Ive hidden my shame but i will be going to N.B next week and there will charges laid against Y .Ars.

    • Sylvia says:

      Never ever forget jjmb that the shame is not yours to bear. It is not yours. It belongs to your abuser, not to you. Put it smack dab where it belongs.

      My thoughts and prayers are with you as you move forward. In fact, I know without a shadow of a doubt that there are many who follow this site whose hearts, thoughts and prayers are with you.

      Stay strong. And, one more time: Don’t ever forget for a moment that the shame is not yours. It belongs to your molester, and it belongs to all those who enabled and protected him. Hold your head high!

  2. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    I would echo Sylvia’s words to you. Please hold your head high, and be proud of your courage as you begin your journey to wellness! You should never ever fear telling the truth.
    You will find supportive friends here on Sylvia’s site as you go through this process. Don’t be afraid to ask for help! It’s right here. Mike.

    • jj says:

      Hi jjlmb,

      I echo Mike and Sylvia’s sentiments. I applaud your willingness and your decision to take action and to report what happened to you.

      I’m in the same situation as you are, and I have already spoken to police! I have also given up on feeling ashamed for what happened, because I know that I was not the conductor in his plans… I was an instrument in his orchestra, that he USED to play his sick music. What happened is NOT our fault, so we have no shame to bear… the shame is all his.

      The MORE of us report these crimes to the police, the more proof they will have when the time comes to lay charges and convict. Victims, unite!


  3. PJ says:

    All of the shame lies with the pervert collar and that church who knew he was molesting. The only way to make them see what harm they have inflicted is for brave souls like you guys to have the courage to come forward. I admire you both and the others to come for having the guts to do so! You will all have our support and prayers throughout your fight. Be strong and God bless you all.

  4. Brenda Brunelle says:

    All the shame rests solely on the people responsible for committing these crimes and for those who cover them up.

    We are survivors of deeds that were forced upon us, not acts that we willingly or even knowingly became a part of.

    2013, in North America we still have to claim the innocence of our children and fight for the justice of all young children that became victims from these known pedophiles.

    I don’t know that I will ever wholly understand just who exactly continues to give the power to the Catholic Church that still exists today.

    What I do know is that each day a new victim/survivor is stepping forward and claiming their rights for justice. The day will come when we finally take back our power regain faith, trust, hope and safety for our future generations of children to come.
    Brenda Brunelle

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