A Newcastle Anglican priest whose long-term "involvement in the sexual abuse of minors" was revealed last week sat on church panels that investigated child sex abuse allegations for more than a decade, church records show.
Father Peter Rushton was one of five clergy on the Newcastle diocese's board of investigation, similar to today's board of professional standards, from 1987, a diocese yearbook shows.
Yearbooks for 1990, 1993 and 1996 show the priest was repeatedly voted to the board of investigation, or the similar "panel of triers", at synod elections through those years.
The two diocesan committees were made up of four or five clergy, and the same number of lay representatives, and heard complaints or allegations involving clergy, including child sex abuse allegations involving priests and church workers.
A spokeswoman for the diocese confirmed Father Rushton "sat on historical disciplinary tribunals within the diocese", and the terms of reference for the tribunals "would have been similar to the current professional standards processes".
Father Rushton retired in 2002 and died in 2007.
Last week Newcastle Bishop Brian Farran apologised publicly to the priest's victims, and said the diocese was co-operating fully with police who are investigating the actions of Father Rushton and other clergy.
A former church employee contacted the Newcastle Herald last week to say he had warned the church as early as 1984 that a "network" of paedophile priests "preyed on servers".
He was outraged when told Father Rushton had sat on the church's disciplinary tribunals all the while he was raising the alarm.
"Anyone who made a complaint to the church during that time should be coming forward again," he said.
"People should tell the media, tell the police. What hope did we have when the sex abuser was hearing the sex abuse allegations?"
The former church employee supplied the Herald with documents showing his repeated complaints about Newcastle Anglican clergy.
"The thing I find so offensive is that Rushton knew me, and yet this bloke was investigating my complaint," he said.
"It's insane, but nothing shocks me about this mob."