THUNDER BAY, ON, April 15 /CNW/ - Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Deputy
Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler, together with members of the NAN Men's Healing
Initiative, welcomed the start of the trial of convicted pedophile Ralph Rowe
on new charges of sexual assault in Kenora court this week.
"We are pleased that this predator has finally been brought before the
courts to face these new charges," said NAN Deputy Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler,
who attended the Rowe trial in Kenora in 2007 that resulted in Rowe's
conviction of 20 counts of sexual offences involving First Nations boys in
northern Ontario between 1977 and 1987. "These claimants displayed remarkable
courage by breaking the silence and coming forward with these allegations, and
we have focused our efforts at supporting the survivors and preparing them for
Rowe was committed to stand trial on new charges of sexual assault
following preliminary hearings in Kenora in August 2008. He is now facing 11
charges of sexual abuse involving seven individuals.
Rowe, a former Anglican minister and Boy Scout master, worked in at least
18 NAN First Nation communities between 1971 and 1986. He served four and a
half years of a six-year sentence in 1994 for indecent and sexual assaults
involving boys aged 6 to 16. He is currently serving a three-year sentence in
a federal penitentiary in British Columbia as a result of his conviction in
"Countless lives and entire communities were devastated by his years of
abuse, and while many of his victims may never fully recover we hope the
healing process can finally begin for survivors and their families," said
Fiddler, noting that high rates of suicide and jail time have been connected
to Rowe's years of abuse.
Nishnawbe Aski Nation is a political territorial organization
representing 49 First Nation communities in James Bay Treaty 9 and Ontario
portions of Treaty 5 - an area covering two thirds of the province of Ontario.
For further information:
For further information: Michael Heintzman, Media Relations Officer -
Nishnawbe Aski Nation, (807) 625-4906 or (807) 621-2790 mobile