Former priest Grecco arrested

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Welland Tribune

06 October 2010

By Tribune Staff

WELLAND — Convicted child molester Donald Grecco has been arrested.

The former Niagara area priest, who in March pleaded guilty to three counts of gross indecency, was arrested by Prince Edward County OPP Wednesday for a breach of his residency requirements.

Sources said he is scheduled to appear for a bail hearing Thursday morning in Belleville.

No other information regarding the arrest was immediately available.

The arrest comes a day after Dunnville’s Michael Blum announced he is suing Grecco, former bishop James Wingle and the Roman Catholic Diocese of St. Catharines for $3 million.

Lawyers representing Blum had failed to locate Grecco to serve him the lawsuit papers.

Meanwhile, James Hennessy isn’t sure he wants to wait a few more years before closing the dark and nightmarish chapter in his life. Also a victim of the former Roman Catholic priest, Hennessy hasn’t decided if he will follow in the footsteps of Blum and launch a lawsuit.

He said going ahead with a civil suit would prolong his anguish by forcing him to wait between two and five years before a settlement could be reached and the Grecco case be put to rest.

“At the same time, what happened was wrong and the church has to be held accountable for that,” Hennessy told The Tribune in a phone interview Wednesday morning from England, where he now lives with his wife and children.

Hennessy was a teenager in Welland when he was sexually molested by Grecco, who was a pastor at St. Kevin’s in Welland at the time. Grecco pleaded guilty to three counts of gross indecency on March 25 in a church scandal which dates back about 30 years. During a news conference Tuesday, Blum, also a victim of the St. Catharines native, disclosed details of the lawsuit he has filed alleging abuse and negligence.

The civil suit claims haven’t been proven in court.

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