Two figures in the church had raised concerns about Peter Ball but were urged to keep quiet and so no action was taken. A couple, who worked for the former Bishop of Lewes and Bishop of Gloucester, said they had also raised concerns but they were ignored.
Cliff James told a member of clergy in 1992 that he had been abused by Ball, but found out later that the person had received phone calls from three of the bishops who had urged her to make sure that he and another alleged victim did not speak to the Police or the media about the abuse. Mr James believes the senior clergy were more concerned with the Church’s reputation rather than the welfare of the victims.
Peter Ball, 84, was jailed for 32 months in October 2015 after he admitted to a string of sex offences against 18 teenagers and young men between the 1970s and 1990s. Ball was sentenced to 32 months for misconduct in public office and 15 months for indecent assaults, to run concurrently.
The former bishop Peter Ball of Lewes and Gloucester was released early from jail on Friday 3 February 2016 after serving only 16 months. His early release must be a huge disappointed to his victims.
A Ministry of Justice spokesman responded by saying that sex offenders were “robustly risk assessed and subject to a strict set of conditions and if they fail to comply, they can be recalled to prison.”
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