Sex Abuse Priest Has Sentence Cut
Jail term reduced by three years
A priest who admitted abusing five school boys in Ealing has had his sentence reduced by three years.
Father David Pearce -a Benedictine monk and former headmaster at St Benedict’s School - had his eight-year sentence reduced to five years after the Court of Appeal ruled that the judge had been too harsh when sentencing him last year.
Pearce, 68, admitted abusing five boys between 1972 and 2007.
Sir Christopher Holland, sitting with Mr Justice David Clarke, said that the indecent and sexual assaults were “moderate”.
He said that the sentencing judge was wrong to elevate the breach of trust committed by Pearce because he was a teacher “to the level of a crime”.
Anthony Nelson, Pearce’s solicitor, said after the hearing:
“It had always been the case that the nature of the offences were all the lower end [of seriousness]. The new sentence properly reflects that and also the great deal of good work this man has done over a 30-year period as demonstrated by the written character references of past pupils.”
September 16, 2010