Archbishop of Birmingham statement on Fr Flahive verdict

 Fr Gerry Flahive was found guilty of four count of indecent assault by Birmingham Crown Court today. He was sentenced to nine months in prison and put on the Sex Offenders Register for ten years. The Most Reverend Vincent Nichols said in a statement: "The Crown Court in Birmingham has found Fr Gerry Flahive guilty of four offences of indecent assault. "In the light of this I wish to express my profound sorrow and regret at the damage done by Fr Flahive, most of all to those he assaulted. "I sincerely apologise to those who, in their youth, looked to him with trust only to have had that trust misused. I hope that the finding of the court helps them to come to terms with those events, which took place so long ago and yet will have remained as a constant burden to them. "From the first moment I learned that serious accusations had been brought against Fr Flahive, he and the Archdiocese of Birmingham have co-operated fully with the authorities. Fr Flahive stood down immediately from his public responsibilities. The correct procedures have been followed at every stage. "This is a moment of great sadness - sadness at what happened in the past; sadness at the burdens that have been borne for so many years; sadness in the hearts of all who knew the good that Fr Flahive most certainly did without knowing the harm that he has also caused. "My prayers and support will continue for all who have been caught up in these events, including Fr Flahive who must now accept the sentence imposed upon him."

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