Cap-Pelé church abuse victims can turn to ex-judge

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Retired Supreme Court Justice Michel Bastarache led a similar report in Bathurst

CBC News

Posted: Jun 4, 2012 9:59 AM AT

Last Updated: Jun 4, 2012 10:58 AM AT

The Archdiocese of Moncton is asking people from Cap-Pelé who were victims of sexual abuse by former priest Camille Léger to contact Michel Bastarache, the retired Supreme Court of Canada justice.

Michel Bastarache, a retired Supreme Court of Canada justice, will be the contact person for anyone who was abused by a former New Brunswick priest.

Michel Bastarache, a retired Supreme Court of Canada justice, will be the contact person for anyone who was abused by a former New Brunswick priest. (Jacques Boissinot/Canadian Press)

Archbishop André Richard said in a letter the church will continue to offer counselling to Léger’s victims who come forward.

But now the church has obtained the services of Bastarache, who will set up and manage a conciliation process for people with complaints about Léger.

Richard said Bastarache’s sense of justice and understanding of people in the community and the province will allow him to help those who have been wronged.

Richard said it will be a confidential process that will give victims access to a quick settlement of their claims.

Several people in the small, southeastern New Brunswick village have come forward recently to talk about being abused by Léger.

The priest died in 1990 and was never convicted of any crimes.

Archbishop André Richard apologized to any victims of Léger in March.

Archbishop André Richard apologized to any victims of Léger in March. (CBC)

The debate started when the village council announced it would hold a referendum on whether to remove the former priest’s name from the local hockey arena.

There was an immediate groundswell of support around the idea of removing Léger’s name from the arena. The Cap-Pelé council had the sign removed and cancelled the plebiscite.

In March, Richard apologized to anyone who was abused by Léger. But he did not mention how the church had already compensated at least one individual for abuse.

Normand Brun, who now lives in Vancouver, said he was abused by Léger.

He said the abuse started when he was nine years old and it went on for four years.

Brun took his complaint to the Catholic church in 1997 and received financial compensation. He is unable to discuss how much money he received due to legal reasons.

Bathurst report in 2010

This is the second time Bastarache has handled a church-related sex abuse file in New Brunswick.

The Diocese of Bathurst hired Bastarache in 2010 to speak to anyone in the church who was abused by any clergy in the Acadian peninsula.

The northern diocese sought Bastarache’s help after two former priests were charged with sex-related offences.

In November 2010, the Catholic diocese said it would offer an apology and financial compensation to the 35 individuals who came forward during the conciliation process led by Bastarache.

Shortly after Bastarache’s report was finished, a New Brunswick judge granted a request from the Roman Catholic diocese of Bathurst to seal any details surrounding financial awards given out by the church.

3 Responses to Cap-Pelé church abuse victims can turn to ex-judge

  1. Sylvia says:

    This makes me sick!!!  I had a gut feel this might be in the offing when spokesman for the Archdiocese of Moncton mentioned last week that the archdiocese of Moncton was “investigating other options.”  

    This will ensure  that what the archdiocese did or did not know about Father Camille Leger’s perversions and when is forever kept under wraps, ditto the the names of all other predatory priests in the archdiocese divulged to Bastarche.

    I m not surprised, just plain sick! 

  2. JG says:

    *I said on another tread(Spokesman for archdiocese of Moncton…) that I would wait for act III to come up!!!….As Sylvia says, this is a continuation of the ”make me sick” again covering up…The more victims settle in this way with ”bastarache” it makes it more difficult for the victims who have held out to get their day in Court…the public will only see half the truth and only half the lies!

    This by no means is a Classic play format in three acts! This is a ”Classic Circus Act” with the three ring …With the Ringmasters, the noise, the make-up and covered faces…

    …and all the victims will be paid with peanuts!


  3. Mike Mc says:

    Well, if any of those victims are reading this, don’t get “peanuts”. Go for BIG cash settlements and don’t give in to any peanut offer.

    Personally, I’d like to see the Church crawl on its knees financially because of this Bastard approach. Oh, did I spell that wrong?

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