‘Predatory’ priest jailed for 22 years for abusing boys
Father Eugene Fitzpatrick ‘abused his position of trust, preying on vulnerable youngsters and subjecting them to horrific sexual abuse’
02 June, 2017 — By Koos Couvée
Father Eugene Fitzpatrick’s first assault took place at a home in Tufnell Park in 1966
POLICE have appealed for potential further victims of a Catholic priest jailed for sexually abusing two boys more than 25 years ago to come forward.
Father Eugene Fitzpatrick, 68, from Canterbury, was jailed for 22 years after being found guilty by a jury at Blackfriars Crown Court last Thursday of raping a boy on multiple occasions between 1986 and 1992 and 11 counts relating to non-consensual sexual activity with another child in the 1960s and 1970s.
The first assault took place at a home in Tufnell Park in 1966 when Fitzpatrick was aged 17 and the boy was under the age of eight.
He first abused the second boy 20 years later, when he was working at Our Lady and Saint Joseph Church, in Balls Pond Road, just across the Hackney border.
The victims, one of whom gave evidence using a pre-recorded video, are now in their 50s.
Mubeena Cockar-Khan, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “We thank them [the victims] for coming forward and supporting this prosecution and hope the verdicts provide a sense of justice for these historic offences against them.”
But detective constables Lorraine Simpson and Klementina Balint, the investigating officers, said they believe Fitzpatrick, who denied the charges, may have abused other boys.
“Eugene Fitzpatrick is a predatory sex offender who abused his position of trust, preying on vulnerable youngsters and subjecting them to horrific sexual abuse over a period of years,” they said in a statement.
“We believe that there may be additional survivors of Fitzpatrick’s actions who continue to suffer in silence.
“We urge anyone who has been abused by Eugene Fitzpatrick to contact police without delay.” They should ring the Met’s Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command on 101
“Specially-trained officers will support victims throughout the investigative process and there are a number of additional support pathways we are able to signpost,” the detectives added.
Fitzpatrick will remain on the sex offenders register for life.