Five retired Quebec clerics charged for alleged decades-long sexual abuse


MONTREAL — Five members of a Catholic religious order were charged Tuesday in connection with alleged sexual abuse of boys in their care between 1961 and 1989.

The members of the Clerics of St-Viateur were arrested at the order’s retirement home in Joliette, Que., about 70 kilometres northeast of Montreal.

Jean Pilon, Gerard Whissell, Laurent Madore, Raoul Jomphe, and Roger Larue, whose ages range from 78 to 88, face some 30 charges involving 15 male underage victims, for abuses that allegedly occurred in teaching institutions across the province.

They were arraigned by telephone and released under several conditions. 

They face charges including gross indecency, sexual assault and indecent assault, some of which are no longer in the Criminal Code but existed at the time the offences allegedly took place.

The order also faces a class-action lawsuit representing about 270 alleged victims who say members abused them inside at least 20 different establishments.

Clerics of St-Viateur Canada said in a statement that it was collaborating with the police and the justice system, but declined further comment due to the ongoing legal case.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 23, 2020.

The Canadian Press