Teacher Joseph William Weygood (left) seen in class a photograph from St Josephs and Sacred Heart from 1967 year book.
Teacher Joseph William Weygood (left) seen in class a photograph from St Josephs and Sacred Heart from 1967 year book.

‘Sadistic’ Christian Brother picked out ‘favourite boys’

A SITTING District Court judge is the star witness in the trial of an allegedly "sadistic" and "extremely" violent Christian Brother who stands accused of molesting a student.

Judge Paul Slattery will give evidence in the Supreme Court against Joseph William Weygood, alleging he saw the former teacher grooming his victim for sex.

The court has also heard allegations Weygood's offending occurred against a background of singling out his "favourite boys" for tickling and wrestling while subjecting others to "sadistic beatings" with a cane.

Weygood, 77, of Victor Harbor, has pleaded not guilty to three counts of indecent assault dating back almost 50 years.

During his teaching career, Weygood worked at St Joseph's Boys School, Blackfriars Prior School and Sacred Heart College.

Opening the trial, prosecutor Sandi McDonald SC said Weygood had also been known, during those times, by the names "Brother Cyril" and "Brother Joseph".

"(At times in his career) corporal punishment was used as a means of discipline and punishment, and some of the brothers resorted to it more than others," she said.

"Weygood was someone who sat at the extreme end of the spectrum in terms of his use of corporal punishment - he used it a lot."

She said Weygood's victim - whose identity is suppressed under state law - was at first a victim of those beatings.

"He will tell you of the effect that violence had upon him, but his relationship with Weygood was more complicated," she said.

"Despite the violence he experienced, they developed something of a friendship … he became one of Weygood's favourite boys."

Ms McDonald said that, on three occasions, Weygood abused that relationship and burgeoning trust by indecently assaulting his victim.

She said the assaults began as wrestling or play-fighting and then became criminal, with the victim struggling to resist.

"(During one assault) the victim started to cry and Weygood said angrily 'you are a crybaby'," she said.

She said the last assault occurred in the victim's living room - and ended when his father walked in, saw what was occurring and ordered Weygood to leave.

The trial, before Acting Justice Michael David and in the absence of a jury, continues.