A Dunedin man who was sexually abused by Catholic priests in New Zealand and Australia has labelled allegations against Cardinal George Pell "disgusting".

Darryl Smith was sexually abused while attending Catholic schools in both New Zealand and Australia.

He has spoken out about the allegations made against Pell, who is accused of groping boys while he was a priest in Ballarat in the 1970s.

"I think it's disgusting. The man hid priests for years they've acknowledged victims and then the Vatican takes him on to work for them, I found that quite disgusting," Smith said.


Pell is the finance chief for Pope Francis at the Vatican, and has vehemently denied the allegations.

Smith said he wanted the Catholic Church to do more for victims of abuse.

"They need to pay more attention to what we're saying... and sit down for a better compensation deal for us that helps us with lifetime counselling and liftetime healthcare."

Smith said he has received compensation from the Church as a result of the abuse he suffered but it was "not enough".

"It doesn't cover the lifetime healthcare and counselling that I need."

He said he wants "actual, true justice".

"They're supposed to look after you for life. They did the damage, you look after it, you've caused it all you fix it, you can't fix it with money.

"We should have a royal commission and if the person is still alive they should arrest them."


Smith said the abuse he suffered as a child still haunts him today.

"I sometimes have to sleep with the light on. I get affected daily, I get nightmares, I even get daymares.

"A certain tune will come on the radio or you can say something to me and I go back there, back to the time that it happened. It's quite scary.

"I get told daily by people 'Why don't you get over it' - well why should I get over it. The system itself owes me and other victims a life.

"My childhood got stolen from me at a very young age. In 1971 when i was only 7 years old my childhood got stolen, you can't replace my childhood."

Smith has launched a number of petitions with the aim of bringing about justice for the victims of abuse at the hands of those in the Church.

"When you're a victim as a child you're a victim for life."

Smith still goes to church but he is no longer a Catholic.

"I wouldn't step in a Catholic church if you paid me."

He implored people to act if they suspected child abuse was going on.

"Don't walk away from it. Do the right thing."