A FORMER chaplain at a children's home run by a Catholic order has been jailed for 15 years for a series of historical sex offences.

Anthony McCallen, of Ingleby Barwick, Stockton, and fellow defendant James Carragher, former head of St William's - an approved school for boys with behavioural problems in Market Weighton, East Yorkshire, run by the Catholic De La Salle order - were sentenced at Leeds Crown Court today (Monday, January 4).

Carragher, who was head from 1976 to 1990, has already served 21 years in prison for sexually abusing boys and was jailed for a further nine years.

The 75-year-old was jailed for seven years in 1993 and a further 14 years in 2004 for offences he committed at St William's.

The judge at Leeds Crown Court said he and McCallen had the boys at the school "effectively trapped" and added: "It is difficult to imagine a worse case of breach of trust".

Judge Geoffrey Marson QC told Carragher he had to take into account the sentence he would have passed if he had heard all the evidence from all three trials - in 1993, 2004 and 2015.

The judge said this would have led him to a sentence of 30 years in prison, from which he deducted the 21 years he had already served.

McCallen, 69, a former chaplain at St William's, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for a series of historical sex offences.

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St William's in Market Weighton

The judge said: "It's perfectly clear that each of you targeted some of the most vulnerable boys. You groomed them, abused them for your own sexual gratification, then threatened them to ensure they did not complain. And you, Carragher, were physically violent."

He said the 11 victims suffered "severe long-term, continuing psychological harm as a result of what you did".

Judge Marson explained how boys had been placed at the school because of difficult circumstances in their lives and were among the most vulnerable in society.

He said Carragher and McCallen knew the boys would not complain at the time because they would not be believed.

The jury heard how McCallen had also been convicted before - of abusing two boys in the 1990s when he was also found in possession of indecent photographs of boys, some of which he took through spyholes as they showered and used the toilet.

Judge Marson said: "Each of you has a long standing, deeply engrained sexual interest in teenage boys. It's an interest, I have no doubt, that continues to persist."

McCallen, of Whernside Crescent, Ingleby Barwick, Stockton, and Carragher, of Cearns Road, Prenton, Merseyside, denied all the charges against them but were found guilty of a series of offences by a jury just before Christmas.

The pair were found not guilty of offences against three further complainants. The jury did not reach verdicts over four more alleged victims and the judge ordered these charges to lie on file.

Solicitor David Greenwood, who represents 109 men who were sexually assaulted at St William's, said a civil compensation case started in 2004 has still not reached a conclusion.