A HUNTER man who was raped by paedophile priest John Denham was not in court yesterday for the process that will confirm Denham dies in jail.
‘‘I don’t want to see him ever again,’’ the man, 49, said.
‘‘The police asked me to write a victim’s impact statement, but even that’s beyond me. I hope the next time I hear about him will be when they let me know he’s passed away.’’
A pre-sentence hearing in Sydney yesterday was adjourned to May on an application from Denham’s lawyer. The former priest, who was defrocked by the Catholic Church in 2011 – 11 years after he was first convicted of sexually abusing a boy – pleaded guilty in August last year to 25 child sex charges involving 18 boys at Singleton, Wingham and St Pius X School, Adamstown, in the 1970s, and accepted another 23 indecent assault charges had occurred.
The 25 offences, including buggery, forced oral sex and indecent assault, were committed against boys aged 11, 12 and 13.
The guilty pleas came three years after Denham pleaded guilty to crimes against 39 boys in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s, and 13 years after his first child sex conviction.
Denham’s reign of terror eventually drew 111 charges from about 60 victims. Another 11 men who were former students of Denham – described by a judge as a ‘‘sadistic’’ offender – have committed suicide.
The Hunter man who could not face Denham again said he believed there were other victims who would never come forward.
‘‘That’s what people don’t understand. It took me more than 30 years to speak about it and it’s still shattering today.
‘‘I can’t face him, ever.’’
The man said he was pleased the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse was allowing the truth about the sexual, physical and mental abuse of children by institutions, including the Catholic Church, and the failure of institutions to act, to be revealed.
But he could not watch coverage of the commission or read about the pain of others.
‘‘I just can’t understand how it’s taken this long to realise how much of it was going on,’’ he said.