Death list reveals blood on the hands of the Catholic Church

A group in the Hunter has compiled a list of more than 30 former Catholic school boys all of whom have two things in common – they were raped by Catholic paedophiles and they died from suicide or drug-related deaths. The group have prepared submissions calling for an investigation by the Royal Commission. The youngest boy on the list was only 13 when he took his own life in his bedroom in 1974. He was one of three students on the list who were from the same year at a Hunter Catholic high school during a period in which men who were later charged with child sex offences had regular contact with students.

The list also includes three former St Pius X college, Adamstown students from the same family who died of suicide and drug-related deaths and two brothers from another Catholic Hunter family who took their own lives at 16 and 22. Several of those on the list were students of convicted paedophile priest, John Denham who taught at St Pius X.

The group’s spokesman, Bob O’Toole, a survivor of sexual abuse by Marist Brother, Leon Mackey is passionate about bringing these deaths to the attention of the Commission and ensuring that those without a voice are heard.

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About Peter Kelso


I am a solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales. I have been admitted to practice since 1984. I am the principal and founder of Kelso Lawyers which has operated in Newcastle since 1986.

I have been an advocate for compensation for victims of abuse since the commencement of the Victims Compensation Tribunal in New South Wales in 1988. I conduct the largest victims practice in New South Wales. I have a high level of engagement with numerous NGOs such as woman’s refuges, sexual assault services, community organisations and healing centres.

On 31 October 2012 I was a finalist for the Justice Medal, presented by the Law and Justice Foundation of New South Wales.


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