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Church leaders say sex allegations groundless

Police probe will reveal the truth, says Malaysian orphanage board

Eustace Nonis, chairperson of the board Eustace Nonis, chairperson of the board
  • ucanews.com reporter, Penang
  • Malaysia
  • January 17, 2011
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Church leaders in Penang are confident that a police probe into alleged sexual misconduct at a Church–run orphanage will clear the institution of any wrongdoing.

St. Joseph’s Home which takes care of 34 children -- 22 girls and 12 boys aged 6-17 – hit the headlines last week after a woman told police that one of the home’s former charges, a boy aged 15, had been molested.

The Board of St. Joseph’s Home said it only found out about the investigation through the media and that the accuser, a woman called “Lim,” has no known connection with the home.

On Jan. 14 the board called a press conference to explain its side of events.

Lim came to the orphanage on Jan. 29 and claimed the boy, identified as “C15” had been molested by a volunteer tutor. Furthermore, she alleged that four years previously the boy had been sodomized by another male resident, a statement said.

The orphanage said it conducted its own investigation and said the tutor had admitted touching the boy on the head and shoulder during group tutorial classes because the boy would occasionally daydream or fall asleep.

After the press conference, board chairperson Eustace Nonis took reporters on a tour of the orphanage.

“Some with experience will say this is only an allegation and will not believe it. But some will believe what they read in the newspaper is the truth,” said board president Bishop Antony Selvanayagam of Penang.

“General opinions about the Church have been affected, no doubt. But our hope is that at the end of it all, some good will come out of it,” he said.

We believe the police will complete their investigation and end up with the truth, he added.

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