AN 89-year old former monk who sexually abused three boys in Northern Ireland in the 1970s and 1980s has been jailed.
Vincent Lewis, formerly of Brother Ambrose of Our Lady of Bethlehem Monastery in Co. Antrim, committed the horrific abuse over a 10-year period up to 1983.
He pleaded guilty at Antrim Crown Court to 57 offences and was put on the sex offenders’ register for life after agreeing to two further years of probation.
Lewis’s crimes were described by Judge Desmond Marrinan as “almost unbelievable” in their cruelty.
He abused one of the boys while he was still a monk, and sickeningly, his two other victims were brothers.
The court also heard that Lewis abused his first victim between the ages of 10 and 15 starting in 1973, before moving to Annagher Road in Coalisland, Co. Tyrone after leaving the Co. Antrim priory in 1978.
His second victim was a young teenager, while the third was the youngster’s younger brother, who was abused from the ages of nine until 13.
Judge Marrinan described Lewis as having been an “evil monk” and told him that his "horrific, terrible and despicable" crimes had affected his victims for life.
Sentencing the sick paedophile to eight and a half years in prison, the judge added that he would’ve jailed him for far longer had he been a younger man.