1 May 2012

Retired priest charged over abuse scandal

10:11 pm on 1 May 2012

A retired Catholic priest at the centre of a child abuse scandal in Australia has been charged after turning himself in to police.

Finian Egan was helped out of his car by detectives as he arrived at Ryde Police Station in Sydney with a lawyer on Tuesday.

Two of his alleged victims hugged as the 77-year-old hobbled with a walking stick into the station, the ABC reports.

He was then charged with 17 offences relating to alleged assaults on four children in Sydney and on the state's Central Coast between 1972 and 1987.

The arrest comes two years after police received complaints from at least five alleged victims.

Finian Egan has already been investigated by the Catholic Church.

It sent him home to resume duties in Ireland at the time and told no-one that he had been banned from ministry.