Fr Matthew Jolley

(Sadly it looks like even with all the appropriate psychological screening for entry to the seminary, an individual like Jolley can be accpeted for the priesthood and be permitted to continue year on year to further study. When an individual displays conservative behaviour and a propensitiy for dressing up in clerical garb long before ordination, why does this not set alarm bells ringing for the Seminary staff? Untold damage has been caused by Jolley's evil behaviour and a married priesthood would give the checks and balances required for a healthy lifestyle).

A CATHOLIC priest told an undercover police officer that he wanted to sexually abuse a two-year-old boy.

Father Matthew Jolley, from Great Sankey, exchanged a string of vile messages online with a man who he thought was the toddler’s dad.

But in reality, he was talking to a police officer who had set up a fake account on a dating app – and the 32-year-old was arrested after travelling to meet up in order to act out his sick desires.

 

Liverpool Crown Court heard today, Friday, that the undercover officer created a decoy profile of a bisexual 34-year-old man on gay dating app Grindr.Fifteen minutes later, the account received a message from Jolley under the name of ‘Breed Me’.

The priest, who was ordained at St Mary’s Church in the town centre in 2015 and worked in Widnes, spoke of his sexual interest in young children.

The church says he will never work in the ministry again and a spokesman said his action were an 'insult' to the Catholic faith.He told to officer: “I have no age limit, so long as they’re cute.

“I like young girls mainly, but wouldn’t say no to boys – I like cute boys.”

The police officer then told Jolley, of Rhona Drive, that he had a two-year-old son.

He replied: “I wish I could share him.”

Over a three-week period, Jolley described in a series of messages on Grindr and online messaging apps Kik and Wickr the sexual acts he wanted to perform on the child and have performed on him – the details of which are too graphic to publish.

The former St Gregory’s Catholic High School pupil, who had been undergoing two years of additional study in Rome, also sent a sexually explicit picture of himself to the officer.

On Thursday, September 26, he drove to an address in Hale, Widnes, in order to meet up with the man he had been messaging.

Arriving at 1.30pm, he entered the house and agreed on sexual acts that he would perform – but was arrested shortly afterwards.

Defence barrister Mark Shanks claimed his client, who has no previous convictions, would have ‘run a mile’ if there had been a two-year-old boy present and that his messages were ‘very much based in fantasy’. Mr Shanks added that Jolley, who appeared in court via video link to HMP Altcourse, feels ‘utterly ashamed’ of his actions.

The defendant admitted arranging a child sex act during an earlier court hearing and was jailed for 40 months by recorder Jeremy Asker.

Sentencing, recorder Asker said: “It can’t be said that this was an aberration.

“This was something you considered at length over time during a lengthy period.

“It progressed to the point where you believed it had almost come to fruition.

“Little did you know that this was an undercover police officer working in a way to counter and prosecute predatory child sex offenders.

“I’m not going to go through the sordid conversation, but you made it clear what your proclivities were and what you intended to do to this child.“Your intention was to involve yourself in sexual activity with a child.

“It goes without saying that your actions and intentions are wholly inconsistent with the teachings of the catholic church.”

Jolley was also barred from working with children and vulnerable adults, and will be required to sign sex offenders register indefinitely.Recorder Asker handed down an indefinite sexual harm prevention order and told the priest to pay a victim surcharge.

Following sentencing, Detective Constable Louise Murphy, of Cheshire's On-line Child Abuse Investigation Team, said: “Jolley committed this terrible offence whilst holding a position of trust."Through his online communications it was clear to see that he was sexually attracted to young children and would do whatever he could in order to fulfil his own sexual gratification.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the undercover law enforcement officers who have been instrumental in building the case against Jolley.

"This case shows how well agencies can work together in order to protect the most vulnerable people in society. It also sends a clear message that anyone who commits such offences are not above the law and they will be brought to justice, regardless of who they are and what they do.”

A spokesman for the Archdiocese of Liverpool said: "It was with a deep sense of shock and revulsion that the Catholic community learned of the activities of Matthew Jolley.

"Pope Francis has referred to such acts as ‘repellent crimes’ and they can have no place in society or in the Church. The actions of Matthew Jolley are an insult to the many thousands of faithful Catholics and priests who daily live out the Gospel in the service of others."The offences which Matthew Jolley was convicted of do not relate to the time when he ministered in parishes and schools.

"Matthew Jolley will never minister in the Church again.

"Our thanks go to Cheshire Police for their prompt action in this investigation."In order to protect all vulnerable groups, including children, and to bring perpetrators to justice we encourage anyone with knowledge or suspicion of such offences to bring them to the attention of the Police and statutory authorities."

A spokesman for the NSPCC said: “Thankfully, no children were at risk of Jolley’s disgusting attempts to sexually abuse a vulnerable infant on this occasion.“This incident highlights the need for strong online legislation to prevent paedophiles like Jolley carrying out their vile behaviour. The NSPCC is calling for the Government to introduce strong new regulations to ensure online companies are held responsible for the safety of children.”

Children can contact Childline on 0800 1111. Adults concerned about the wellbeing of children can contact the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 8005000.