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St John of God priest and brother to be extradited

An Australian priest and religious brother will be extradited to New Zealand to face child sex charges dating back 50 years.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Fr Raymond John Garchow, 57, and Br Rodger Maloney, 70, both worked at the Marylands School in Christchurch.

They, along with Br William Lebler, now 83, are accused of carrying out indecent acts and sodomy on young boys at the New Zealand boarding school, which was funded by the St John of God Catholic order, between 1955 and 1979.

They face a total of 61 charges of sexual assault against the boys, many of them with mental disabilities and learning difficulties.

In Sydney's Downing Centre Local Court, Magistrate Hugh Dillion ordered Garchow and Maloney be extradited to New Zealand on a date to be set pending an appeal.

Lebler, who was deemed "borderline mentally retarded" by psychiatrists, was released by the court and escaped extradition. He therefore will not be tried for his alleged crimes.

Mr Dillion said the two other men would be extradited to face a prospective trial in New Zealand despite their age and medical conditions.

Maloney and Garchow have had cancer of the prostate and throat, respectively, and were reported to have suffered severe depression since their arrest in 2003.

"The opponents (Garchow and Maloney) are accused of terrible abuse of very vulnerable children committed to their care," Mr Dillion said in his judgment. "The alleged breaches of trust over lengthy periods with numbers of boys by all the opponents are almost as bad as could be imagined."

Maloney, who started working at the Marylands School in 1960, was responsible for the school's management and administration until 1977. He is alleged to have molested 11 boys in that time.

Garchow, who was ordained a priest in August 1987, began work at the school in 1964 teaching the students and acting as a dormitory supervisor. It is alleged he molested three boys aged under 16 between 1969 and 1974.

Both men were tracked down by police in Australia after Christchurch authorities began collating complaints from alleged victims in 2002 which sparked a full-scale investigation.

Maloney and Garchow's lawyers applied for a bail application, to be heard in the Federal Court. An appeal against extradition is also planned.

Priest and brother to be extradited (Sydney Morning Herald/Australian Associated Press 14/2/05)

Hospitaller Order of St John of God (Australia - offline)
St John of God Health Services
Hospitaller Brothers of St. John of God (USA)

Brothers face extradition to NZ to face abuse charges (CathNews 1/12/03)
Order head says give abuse victims benefit of doubt (CathNews 14/10/03)
John of God Order condemns tactics of NZ law firm (CathNews 6/8/03)
Sex abuse complainant admits lying to get payout (CathNews 3/7/03)
Brother suspended over sex claims (CathNews 5/7/02)
St John of God Brothers to pay out $3.6 million (CathNews 13/6/02)

Catholic clergymen to be extradited to NZ ( 14/2/05)
Church fights sex case extradition (Sydney Morning Herald 15/2/05 - payment required)

15 Feb 2005