Teacher plays strip poker with class

A school teacher known only as Peter C has been accused of playing strip poker with his 12- to 13-year-old pupils and instructing them to watch porn for homework.

Peter C has been accused by three mothers, Angela Napoli (33), Venhar Fontana (41) and Rose Scalise (37), of indecent behaviour at the school in Wettingen, Zurich, online news website 20 Minutes reported.

“He used perverse language with the sixth graders and told them they had to watch pornographic films for homework,” the mothers said.

Scalise also claims that Peter C touched her daughter’s bottom on one occasion, and that he encouraged strip poker during class.

“He looked on passively as a girl in the class took her trousers off,” Scalise told the website.

With a previous class, it has emerged that he also played strip poker with pupils during what should have been an arithmetic lesson, sources told 20 Minutes.

Headmaster Martin Villing said he had not been aware that this behaviour had been going on with the current class, but assured parents in November that he would do something about it.

In February, when still no action had been taken, the parents approached the school board.

“A possible paedophile has been teaching our children for months and nothing has happened,” the angry mothers said.

Thomas Sigrist, president of the Wettingen school board, confirmed that Peter C has been on sick leave since early March. The official reason for his absence is burn-out.

One of the affected pupils has now been transferred to a school in a neighbouring village.

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Catholic church in Valais rocked by new sex abuse claims

Accusations of historic sexual abuse have been made against around ten Catholic priests in the bishopric of Sion in the canton of Valais.

Catholic church in Valais rocked by new sex abuse claims
Photo: lightpoet/Depositphotos

The bishop of Sion, Jean-Marie Lovey, has asked the victims for forgiveness, the Swiss news agency SDA reported, quoting Radio Rhône FM.

It said the abuse of children and young people happened between the 1950s and 1990s, and all the cases were now too old for a prosecution to take place.

The paedophile priests were identified after some ten victims went to the diocese of Sion with abuse allegations last year.

Three of the accused clergymen are still alive.

One of the victims told the radio the numbers of reported abuse cases did not correspond to the reality.

He said he had met around 50 other victims in Valais, many of whom did not want to talk about what they had experienced.

The man accused the church of a cover-up, saying previous bishops had known about the sexual abuse but had done nothing except move some priests to other parishes.

But Bishop Lovey, who was appointed by Pope Francis in 2014, denied there had been an attempt to cover up the abuse.

He said priests were moved to other parishes as a preventive measure.

Between 2010 and 2016, around 220 victims informed the Swiss church authorities of abuse by ordained clergy between 1950 and 1990, SDA said.

The latest cases in Valais will be included in the church’s statistics for 2017, which have not yet been published.

In February 2017 the Swiss Bishops Conference set up a commission charged with awarding compensation to victims of historic sex abuse by Swiss priests.

The leading church authority announced it had created a 500,000 franc reparations fund to pay compensation to victims who no longer have the right to seek redress in court since the statute of limitations has passed.