THE CLOYNE report may be published next week.
Prepared by the Murphy commission, it follows an investigation into the handling of clerical child sex abuse allegations by church and State authorities over a 13-year period in the Catholic diocese of Cloyne.
Yesterday Minister for Justice Alan Shatter said it was “likely the report can be brought before Cabinet on Tuesday week and be published very shortly thereafter.”
Speaking on RTÉ Radio 1’s This Week programme he indicated the delay in publication of the report was due to “a long-drawn-out process of consultation involving lawyers who had an interest in the matter”.
The completed report was presented to the former minister for justice Dermot Ahern on December 23rd last.
Its findings concern clerical child sex abuse allegations made between January 1st, 1996, when the Catholic Church in Ireland first introduced child protection guidelines, and February 1st, 2009.
It was ordered by the government in January 2009 after publication the previous month of a report on the Cloyne diocesan website that found child protection practices there were “inadequate and in some respects dangerous”.
That report had been prepared by the church’s own child protection watchdog, the National Board for Safeguarding Children.
The government extended the remit of the Murphy commission to include Cloyne.
The commission at the time was also investigating the handling of clerical child sex abuse allegations against a sample 46 priests in the Dublin archdiocese.
It published that Dublin report in November 2009.
Its Cloyne report contains 26 chapters, is about 400 pages long, and includes findings on all 19 priests who faced abuse allegations there over the 13-year period investigated.
On April 8th last, president of the High Court Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns decided parts of the report should not be published pending the outcome of criminal proceedings against one priest.