Judge rules that deceased paedophile priest Michael Studdert’s estate must be frozen to allow his victims to bring claims for compensation
Michael Studdert, a former Priest and Anglican Minister had been convicted for possession of indecent images in 1988 whilst working as a Chaplain at Eagle House School, Berkshire. He was also jailed for four years in 2006 over possessing indecent images. He died aged 78 in 2017.
Studdert, who was also a former teacher and school chaplain, had also worked in Surrey and Manchester and had connections with Poland.
A High Court judge, Chief Master Marsh, noted that it seemed likely that “Studdert had sexual contact with children under the age of 16 in Poland” and that there was a real prospect that Studdert had “committed historic sexual assault” in both England and Wales and Eastern Europe.
The judge ruled that Studdert’s estate (the property and belongings he left behind when he died), worth around £4.7 million, must not be passed on to the beneficiaries of his will until time had been allowed for any victims to come forward to bring potential claims for compensation.
The judge had ordered that a website be set up at https://www.michaelstuddert.org/ so that victims would know he had died and would be able to give notification of any potential claims.
Studdert’s estate will not be frozen indefinitely and so it is extremely important that any victim that wants to bring a claim against his estate, act now in notifying the estate.
As a specialist abuse lawyer, I would always advise any victim to seek legal advice over their rights to bring a claim for compensation.
Joseph Carr is a senior solicitor in the Abuse team at Bolt Burdon Kemp. If you feel you may have a claim or are enquiring on behalf of a loved one, contact Joseph free of charge and in confidence on 020 7288 4807 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, complete this form and one of the solicitors in the Abuse team will contact you. Find out more about the Abuse team.