The trial of a Roman Catholic priest charged with sexual offences against three teens in the late 1990s is underway in Victoria.

Father Phil Jacobs was a priest in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Victoria at the time of the alleged abuses in the late 1990s.

Jacobs found work in B.C. despite previous allegations involving boys in the U.S.

He resigned his position in Victoria in 2002 after it was made public that he was dismissed from a church in Columbus, Ohio during the mid-1990s following allegations of misconduct there.

Jacobs was arrested by the Canada Border Services Agency in August 2010 while entering the country at Victoria airport.

John Shuster, a representative of an international organization called SNAP — the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests — is in Victoria for Jacobs’ trial.


Phil Jacobs was arrested in August 2010 after arriving at Victoria airport. (

Shuster said SNAP has found such trials can dredge up memories for other people who may have been abused.

"I'm hoping that a lot of survivors will hear the message that they have options in terms of healing and learning to deal with the trauma that happened to them and they can get better if they take the right steps, and we're trying to offer that opportunity," Shuster said.

Shuster also said statistics show only one in 10 people who have been sexually abused ever disclose that abuse to police.