30 Mar 2011

Samoa Catholic church probes abuse in its shelter

2:52 pm on 30 March 2011

The Catholic Church in Samoa has appointed a task force to investigate allegations that a young girl was sexually abused while she was in a church shelter for abuse victims.

The alleged incident reportedly took place in the church's Toai-manu shelter.

A member of the task force says the director of the Fiaola Clinic, which is another service provided by the church, has been suspended to await the outcome of the internal inquiries.

The clinic offers counseling after attempted suicides and in alcohol abuse cases.

Our correspondent says a task force member, who did not want to be named, says if the allegations are proven it'll be a sad event, especially given the trust people have in the church.