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Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby says sorry to Dean of Jersey over abuse case

by Aaron James

Most Revd Justin Welby met with Very Revd Bob Key and his wife Daphne at Lambeth Palace last week to assure him there was "no evidence of problems in Jersey".

It's after concerns claiming Dean Bob Key mishandled investigations into a churchwarden's alleged abuse against a woman, who can only be referred to as HG.

Mr Key was subsequently suspended temporarily and the Bishop of Winchester Rt Revd Tim Dakin, who oversaw the Island of Jersey at the time, transferred oversight of the Dean's abuse investigation to other parties.

This transferal eventually led to the Bishop of Dover Rt Revd Trevor Wilmott assuming episcopal oversight of the Church in Jersey and Guernsey in place of the Bishop of Winchester.

Police investigated the abuse claims and found insufficient evidence to proceed.

In a statement back in 2013, Mr Key said: "I regret mistakes that I made in the safeguarding processes and I understand that, upon reflection, it would have been more helpful if I had co-operated more fully with the Korris [safeguarding] Review.

"I now add my own apology to that of the Bishop of Winchester and Archbishop of Canterbury to the vulnerable person at the heart of this matter.

Speaking to the BBC after the Archbishop's apology at Lambeth Palace last week, Mr Key said: "We were able to express some of our experiences and felt that the Archbishop came to appreciate something of what we have been through.

"We are grateful for his understanding and his leadership in making this apology."

The Bishop of Winchester (below) has released a separate statement in which he claimed the case had "not been handled well".

Rt Revd Tim Dakin said: "Last week, I sent a private apology to the survivor, regarding the abuse complaint she made in Jersey in 2008.

"I have offered to repeat my apology face-to-face, and to discuss the help and support we have available, although recognise fully that she may not want any of this."

An independent report, which will not be published over concerns for the wellbeing of the survivor, ruled that no disciplinary action within the church should be taken but that HG did not receive justice.

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