A man unleashed his ''deeply entrenched hatred'' for the Catholic order by burgling dozens of its churches across suburban Melbourne, reports The Age.
A judge heard the man's ''rancour and rage'' against the Catholic Church surfaced 20 years ago in South Australia when he was first convicted of the offence of ''sacrilege''.
His barrister told the County Court last Friday that after his client's removal a year ago as a worker with the St Vincent de Paul Society, the ''rage and anger that has so dominated his life took over and he became unstable''.
Mark Regan said the man, now 44, had a ''deeply entrenched belief system of the wrong perpetrated against him'' by a priest who abused him as a child, and the Catholic Church, which he resented.
The man, who cannot be named, pleaded guilty to 59 charges of mostly aggravated burglary, burglary and theft that involved more than 30 churches and parish houses and a respite school and presbytery.
He told police he felt his crimes were ''payback'' for being molested and was handed a phone book in custody to mark the churches he burgled.
FULL STORY Church burglaries were 'acts of rage and revenge' (Age)