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Guilty Plea By Morgan Fahey Vindicates Survivors

Guilty Plea By Dr Morgan Fahey Vindicates Survivors

Rape Crisis said the guilty plea today by Dr Morgan Fahey vindicated the stories of his victims, and that the case highlighted the difficulty of reporting for sexual abuse survivors.

"Dr Fahey's admission of guilt today is a vindication of all those women he abused while they were under his care," said Claire Benson National Spokeswoman for Rape Crisis.

Rape Crisis says the case shows how difficult it can be for sexual abuse survivors to report to the police.

The case was first investigated in 1998 but Christchurch police decided to take no action. Rape Crisis says it is often very difficult to bring a case where there may be little or no corroborative evidence, and the jury has to choose whether to believe the defendant or the complainant.

"Dr Fahey was a man of considerable standing in the community. If the women assaulted by him had complained to police 34 years ago, it is unlikely that they would have been believed," says Ms Benson. "Because his behaviour then received no censure, he continued his offending for 34 years."

Rape Crisis says it is particularly difficult for women to complain about abuse by their medical practitioners. They may be accused of making false allegations because of their psychological or emotional problems that have been caused by the abuse.

" A sexual offender may successfully deny allegations about him - this can be extremely traumatic for the survivors,"says Ms Benson,"The decision by Dr Fahey to plead guilty allows the survivors of his abuse to stand vindicated without the trauma of testifying in court."

ends

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