ARCHIVE: Special Commission of Inquiry into Catholic Church cover up of sex abuse

LATE last year Premier Barry O’Farrell announced a Special Commission of Inquiry into ‘‘certain child sexual abuse allegations’’ raised by Hunter police officer Peter Fox.

The actions of two former priests of the Maitland-Newcastle diocese of the Catholic Church, paedophiles Denis McAlinden and James Fletcher, are at the centre of the inquiry.

An initial bank of hearings, in May, looked at whether Detective Chief Inspector Fox was ‘‘asked to cease investigating relevant matters and whether it was appropriate to do so’’.

 The current bank of hearings, which began on June 24 and which will continue to at least late July, are concerned with the church’s response handling of the McAlinden and Fletcher matters.