A lawyer says the number of people who have reported being abused by church officials is “the tip of the iceberg” after more victims of a paedophile Leeds priest came forward.
The Yorkshire Evening Post reported this month how the Church of England awarded a six-figure payout to a man who was abused by Terence King from the age of 11.
King, a former vicar at St Mary’s Church in Woodkirk near Morley, killed himself while being investigated by police in 2002. It is thought detectives were looking into complaints by several victims at the time.
Now the lawyer representing the man who made the successful claim says the story has prompted others to begin the fight for justice.
Dino Nocivelli, of Bolt Burdon Kemp, said: “My firm has been contacted by several people who have also suffered child abuse within the Church of England, including two people who suffered abuse at the hands of King.
“This confirms my view that when we talk about child abuse within the Church of England, we have only seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of the number of people who have come forward.”
He also criticised the Church for failing to apologise to his client personally.
A spokeswoman for the Diocese of West Yorkshire and the Dales said the Bishop of Leeds planned to contact the man. She said the previous Bishop of Wakefield had offered to meet him after he first made a complaint. “We continue to encourage any victims to come forward so that justice may be done,” she added.