Retired Armidale priest David Joseph Perrett in court after magistrate told detectives have received new complaint of historical sex abuse

No pleas: David Joseph Perrett outside Armidale Local Court. The now 80-year-old served as a priest in the Diocese of Armidale from 1961-95. Photo: Rachel Baxter
No pleas: David Joseph Perrett outside Armidale Local Court. The now 80-year-old served as a priest in the Diocese of Armidale from 1961-95. Photo: Rachel Baxter

A COURT has been told another alleged victim has come forward reporting allegations of abuse against a now retired priest in the New England.

David Joseph Perrett is already facing 58 charges, accused of molesting more than a dozen boys in the 1970s and 80s.

Perrett, now aged 80, was again supported by family members in Armidale Local Court where Magistrate Michael Holmes heard a new allegation had been reported to police.

It came after solicitor for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Katharine Brady said prosecutors needed more time to serve the brief of evidence.

“The orders I gave previously are no longer being adhered too, is that what you’re telling me?” Mr Holmes asked.

“I understand there has been a further complainant contact police,” Ms Brady said.

I understand there has been a further complainant contact police.

DPP solicitor Katharine Brady

“So there is further investigations," Mr Holmes replied.

Ms Brady said “there has been some further materiel served today at court” and asked for an adjournment to January to serve more brief items.

Mr Holmes said the matter needed to resolve and be moved to a higher court on the next date.

“A line has to be drawn,” he said.

“We’ve got to get this matter moved to the district court.”

Defence solicitor Greg Birtles said counsel had been briefed in the case and foreshadowed the defence may look to call witnesses to test evidence at a committal hearing.

“We are considering a 91, 93 application,” he told the court.

“Counsel has asked me to put that on the record today.”

Perrett remains on bail with the case adjourned to the new year.

According to court documents, Perrett, is accused of indecently assaulting at least 14 boys between 1970 and 1987 in Armidale, Lower Creek, Guyra, Walgett and Moree.

Five of the alleged victims were molested by Perrett in Armidale, including one who was also allegedly abused in Moree as well. 

In June, Fairfax Media revealed upwards of 10 further complainants had come forward, claiming they were abused by Perrett while he was a Catholic priest in the New England.

As part of his bail conditions, he has been ordered not to leave an Armidale address, where he is living with family, unaccompanied and must report to police four times a week.

He is also prohibited from going within 50m of any school, playground or place frequented by young people.

Perrett served as a priest in the Diocese of Armidale from 1961 to 1995.