Page last updated at 08:25 GMT, Sunday, 31 May 2009 09:25 UK

Brother's abuse compensation call

Commission to Inquire Into Child Abuse's report
A senior policeman is to examine the report in a criminal justice context

Religious orders at the centre of a report into child abuse in the Republic should make more resources available for compensation.

This is according to a member of the leadership team of the Irish Christian Brothers, Brother Edmund Garvey.

The orders have been strongly criticised for doing a deal with the Irish government several years ago.

It limited the amount of money they would have to pay victims of abuse.

Brother Garvey also said criminal prosecutions should be brought against those guilty of abusing children.

"The processes of the law and the processes of the state and of the legal system must be used to bring people to justice who perpetrated criminal actions against children," he said.

Minister for Justice Dermot Ahern said he was working with the Republic's attorney general to see if prosecutions could be brought.

The gardai have also appointed a senior policeman to examine the report in a criminal justice context.

Dead or alive

It was initially thought the Commission to Inquire Into Child Abuse's findings would not be used for criminal prosecutions - in part because the Christian Brothers successfully sued the commission in 2004 to keep the identities of all of its members, dead or alive, unnamed in the report.

No real names, whether of victims or perpetrators, appear in the final document.

Many victims reacted with anger that the commission's findings would not result in their abusers being jailed.


More than 2,000 people told the commission they had suffered physical and sexual abuse as children in the institutions.

It found that sexual abuse was "endemic" in boys' institutions, and church leaders knew what was going on.

The Irish deputy prime minister, Mary Coughlan, described the abuse of children in Catholic-run institutions as one of the "darkest chapters" in Irish history.

The report, nine years in the making and covering a period of six decades, also found government inspectors failed to stop beatings, rapes and humiliation.

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