ACT News


Catholic priest denies indecency allegations

A Canberra Catholic priest has denied allegations he committed acts of indecency on a child in the 1990s.

Father Edward Evans, 83, appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court for the first time on Friday, and was charged with three acts of indecency between 1994 and 1997.

The priest, who worked as a German-language chaplain, is accused of indecently touching a girl three times, twice when she was between 11 and 12, and a third time when she was 13. Father Evans pleaded not guilty to all charges in a brief court appearance before the magistrate, Bernadette Boss.

The priest worked with Canberra's German Catholics, and represents the country's Catholic mission. Among other services, Father Evans conducted German-language Masses from St Patrick's Catholic Church on Sundays.

Officers had arrested the priest at the City Police Station last week, and granted him bail on several conditions. Police said last week the priest had been subjected to a ''lengthy investigation''. The court heard he had surrendered his passport.

Father Evans is also subject to many other bail conditions, including that he not contact, intimidate or harass certain individuals.

His bail was varied on Friday to remove two conditions. The accused and his lawyer, Ben Aulich, declined to comment outside court. The matter continues before the court in August.