By Bankole Wright
Paul Shanley, a former US Roman Catholicpriest is set to be released from prison 12 years after his conviction on child rape charges.
He was among the first clergymen to stand trial after the Boston Globe’s Spotlight team found allegations against priests of serial child sexual abuse and coverups by the Boston Archdiocese.
The scandal rocked through the church, exposing similar allegations worldwide that compromised its moral authority and led to years of multimillion-dollar settlements.
Shanley was 74 years old when a Middlesex County jury convicted him in 2005 of repeatedly raping a boy from his parish in the 1980s. His victim, who was 27 years old during the trial, testified that Shanley regularly pulled him out of Sunday catechism class for what he called “special duties” and molested him in various rooms of St. John the Evangelist, a defunct parish in the Boston suburb of Newton.
Now 86, Shanley is scheduled to be released from prison and begin 10 years of supervised probation.