New York Post

Rev. Paul Shanley, a 74 year old priest who is now accused of rape, spoke in favor of sexbetween men and boys at a 1979 meeting that apparently led to the founding of a group advocatingthe practice. Documents show that the Archdiocese of Boston knew of this and sexual-misconductallegations against him since at least 1967 but continued for three decades to assign him toparishes where he had access to children. The North American Man Boy Love Association apparentlywas formed at the end of the meeting. All of the suffering that has taken place at the hands ofPaul Shanley...none of it had to happen, said Roderick MacLeish, an attorney for the family ofGregory Ford, 24, who says he was repeatedly raped by Shanley in the 1980s. His accusers houndedthe church, threatening to go public with the fact that Shanley held a managerial job at Leo House,a Catholic hostel in Manhattan where children sometimes stayed. The Roman Catholic officials inBoston and New York allowed him to stay in his managerial job there for more than two years, from1995 to 1997, assuring themselves that he was properly supervised, according to more than 800 pagesof internal church documents released in a lawsuit against him. On May 3, 2002, Shanley agreed toreturn to Massachusetts to face charges that he repeatedly raped the boy, sometimes in a churchconfessional, over a seven year period. He waived his right to fight extradition at a brief courthearing. He was held without bail until he was picked up by Massachusetts authorities. Medicalrecords released showed that the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston knew in the early 1990s thatShanley was psychologically damaged beyond repair, but still approved his subsequent work at LeoHouse. Medical and psychiatric records show that the archdiocesan officials and doctors exchangedcorrespondence about him in which they expressed concern over his condition and whether he mightcause further harm. In one document, Shanley writes that he was sexually abused by a priest while ateen and a seminarian. A new report charges that the openly gay priest recreated a Sodom andGomorrah in Palm Springs, California, renting actor Tony Curtis' old house for randy poolside sexwith his pals and even suggesting his lover become a porn star.

Shanley was released December 11, 2002, on $300,000 bond after spending seven months in jail.Meanwhile, Voice of the Faithful, a Catholic lay group, called for the resignation of CardinalBernard Law, joining a growing chorus of dissent against the leader of the scandal-plaguedarchdiocese.

Shanley will not be prosecuted in California because of problems with the evidence. There is noevidence showing that he knew that his alleged victim was under 18 at the time, Riverside CountyAssistant District Attorney Sue Steding said. San Bernardino County prosecutors took similar steps,declining to seek statutory rape charges against Shanley, who was accused of seducing the same 17year old boy in Big Bear Lake in 1990. The announcement means Shanley is unlikely to face anycriminal charges relating to alleged sexual abuses in California.

The Boston Archdiocese has settled lawsuits filed by four men who say they were molested byShanley. The exact financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. However, an attorney forthe plaintiffs said each will get more than the $300,000 maximum that 550 other alleged abusevictims will receive in a $85 million settlement reached with the archdiocese last September. Thefour plaintiffs had refused to sign on to the earlier settlement.

Shanley has been defrocked, along with a priest imprisoned for raping a 12 year old boy, thechurch announced yesterday. In a letter dated May 3, and obtained by The Associated Press,Archbishop Sean O'Malley informed Shanley that Pope John Paul II decided on February 19 to removehim from the priesthood. The archdiocese confirmed Shanley's dismissal and announced that Ronald H.Paquin, who was sentenced in 2002 to 12 to 15 years behind bars for raping an altar boy, also wasdefrocked. Paquin, 61, also was named in 24 suits alleging he sexually molested other children.

On February 15, Shanley was sentenced to 12 to 15 years in prison. He was convicted last week oftwo counts each of child rape and indecent assault on a child. He will be eligible for parole ineight years.

(Boston, Massachusetts)