Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Gerard Vincent Byrnes Gets 10 Years

Australia: A former Toowoomba Catholic school teacher and child protection officer has been jailed for 10 years for raping and sexual assaulting girls.

Gerard Vincent Byrnes, 61, was sentenced yesterday on 44 child-sex offences but, he will spend less than half the time behind bars sought by prosecutors. Byrnes must serve eight years before he is eligible for parole. He has already served nearly two years in pre-sentence custody, so the former teacher could be freed in 2016.

Byrnes had worked in Catholic schools in NSW and Queensland since 1970 as both teacher and principal. Many of the offences occurred after a complaint was made to the school, but not acted on because his denial was believed.

Read More: Gerard Vincent Byrnes

One of the parents of the 13 girls he abused said the sentence was sickening, and another shouted at him: "We'll be waiting."