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Catholic Priest Charged With Making Date Rape Drug; Boston Scandal Intensifies

Rev. Jeffrey Windy of the Catholic Diocese of Peoria, Illinois was charged last month with helping to make and distribute gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB), the date rape drug. A spokesperson for the Catholic Diocese announced that Windy, who has been released to his parents and is awaiting trial, has been suspended from his duties. Windy allegedly purchased chemicals used to make GHB and was seen manufacturing the drug. GHB can be used as a hallucinogen or as a means to incapacitate people for the purpose of committing sexual assault. Law enforcement is investigating sexual assault cases that may have involved GHB to determine if there could be any links to the illegal manufacture of the drug by Windy and others.

The Boston Archdiocese sexual assault and abuse scandal also continues to grow. Seven former altar boys have now pressed charges of sexual abuse against retired priest Paul Desilets. The Archdiocese would not comment on these charges. Meanwhile, defrocked priest John Geoghan asked that the charges of child rape against him be dropped because, he claims, the statute of limitations has elapsed. Judge Margaret Hinkle will hear arguments on the statute of limitations issue on February 20. Geoghan has already been convicted of indecent assault on a minor and faces another criminal trial relating to a separate incident of pedophilia.

Since Geoghans trial, Catholic parishioners have been calling for the resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law of the Boston Archdiocese, who allowed Geoghan to remain a priest while knowing of his alleged sexual abuse. Law, however, refuses to resign. Appearing on CNNs Talk Back Live, David Clohessy of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) noted that even if Law were to resign, the problem would still continue. Clohessy pointed out that the Boston Archdiocese is only one of many where rampant sexual assault by priests occurs. He cautioned that the way in which the Catholic Church handles sexual abuse, in general, must change for justice to be served.

Media Resources: Boston Globe, 2/12/02; CNN, Talk Back Live, 2/11/02; Associated Press, 1/30/02; Quad-City Times, 1/30/02; Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests; Feminist Daily News Wire, Feminist Majority Foundation