June 2018

Priest who fathered baby with teenager and sexually abused 11-year-old girl jailed

A priest who had a baby with a teenager and sexually abused another girl has been jailed.

Alan Devine, 75, has been sentenced to two years behind bars for six counts of indecent assault against the victims in the 1970s.

He was brought to justice for the historic abuse after one of the women, now in her 50s, bravely came forward to police last year.

In victim impact statements they described how Devine, of Worthing Close in Offerton , was a ‘highly respected’ chaplain of a Roman Catholic school in Stockport .

Speaking directly to him one said: “You took away my childhood, you left me with no self-respect.”

During the 1970s, Devine abused his position of power and molested one of the girls on five occasions over a number of years.

As a teenager, she fell pregnant with his baby, which was given up for adoption.

He also sexually assaulted an 11-year-old, when she was a passenger in his car.

The abuse had a devastating impact on both of the girls, Vanessa Thomson, prosecuting said.

A victim impact statement from one of the women read to the court by Ms Thomson, said: “I don’t know how to describe the impact on me. The unexpected birth of a child whilst I was in my teen years, the courses of counselling and medication has had a psychological impact that nobody can imagine.

“I’ve been on medication constantly. I have counted out the tablets to end my life. I have spent years not allowing people to get close to me.”

The other victim’s impact statement was also read to the court.

Addressing Devine, it said: “You used your position as a priest to get to know our family. You took away my childhood and early adulthood. You left me with no self respect. You hurt me and gave me problems with intimacy. You gave me false ideas of a relationship and love. I have no self esteem.”

The court heart that Devine was given a caution in 2005 for possession of indecent pictures of children.

On June 8, 2016, Devine was arrested and, despite denying the offences against him, was found guilty of six counts of sexual assault at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court.

 Judge Stuart Driver QC , said that a custodial sentence was the only appropriate punishment.

Addressing Devine, who did not show any emotion in the court, he said: “You have shown no remorse at all. Your behaviour is a profound and serious breach of trust. The impact was serious and long lasting. You were highly respected because of your position and you were trusted because of your position.”

Devine will also be on the sex offenders register for 10 years.