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  Home :: 2007 September :: Abuse vicar is sacked by Church
Abuse vicar is sacked by Church

Smith was jailed for five-and-a-half years in May
A vicar jailed for sexually abusing six boys over a 30-year period has been removed from office.

The Reverend David Smith, 52, was jailed forfive-and-a-half years in May. He had been the vicar at St John's inClevedon, Somerset.

The Church of England said Smith will never work as a priest again - the maximum penalty it could impose.

It had been continuing to pay Smith his annual stipend since the conviction, but this has now also been stopped.

The Bishop of Bath and Wells, the Right Reverend PeterPrice, said the penalties were imposed as soon as possible after theconviction.

We can now look to the future with hope and confidence
Bishop Price

A spokesman said: "It was not possible to take actionimmediately after Smith was jailed as the bishop was obliged to complywith various time limits in the Clergy Discipline Measure 2003including the allowance of further time for Smith to appeal against thebishop's penalty.

"That time limit has now expired and the penalty has been imposed."

Bishop Price added: "The legal processes we had to go through take a frustratingly long time but they have now been completed.

"We can now look to the future with hope and confidence."

During Smith's trial, it emerged that concerns had beenraised with the Church of England on two occasions about him - once in1983 and then in 2001.

Between 1983 and 1993 he was team vicar at Malvern Link in Worcestershire.

Despite the church reassuring two complainants that thematter had been "dealt with", Smith continued to abuse boys at thevicarage in Clevedon. 

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Pedophilia and sexual abuse of children in Australia