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Commission needed to investigate claims: O'Farrell

PRESSURE is mounting on NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell to call a royal commission into the alleged cover-up of child sex abuse by police and the Catholic Church in the state's Hunter region.

Since senior police officer, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox, published an open letter saying he had lost count of the number of sex abuse cases in NSW and could testify "the church covers up, silences victims, hinders police investigations, alerts offenders, destroys evidence and moves priests to protect the good name of the church...many priests don't want a royal commission, nor does the hierarchy of the church, but God knows, we need one".

Mr O'Farrell told reporters in Sydney on Friday the allegations were serious and while he had full confidence in NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione a commission was needed to investigate Det Insp Fox's claims.