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Former Towsville priest in court on abuse charges

A court has heard that former Townsville priest who has admitted to indecent dealings with 20 girls in the Queensland mining town of Mount Isa in the 1970s told one of his victims God had placed his trust in him.

Neville Joseph Creen told the Brisbane District Court yesterday there was no excuse for his "repulsive sexual behaviour".

The 63-year-old has pleaded guilty to 34 counts of indecent dealing committed between June 1973 and December 1981 at the Mount Isa school attached to his parish. The matter has been adjourned.

The girls were aged between four and 13.

Crown prosecutor Carl Heaton described Creen as a trusted and accepted member of his community who "could not walk down the street without people stopping him for a chat".

"He was welcomed into the home of many families; they took him into their homes and fed him on many occasions, regular occasions, and included him as a member of the family to a large extent," Mr Heaton said.

"It was within that environment (Creen's) offending was committed."

Mr Heaton said Creen's comments to a girl about being above teachers and parents and having God's trust showed he had expressly used the authority of his position in both the school and the church to achieve the abuses.

Townsville Bulletin

Priest 'chosen by God' for sex crimes (Courier-Mail)
Ex-priest admits abusing 20 girls (Courier-Mail)

10 Sep 2003