A CATHOLIC priest who indecently assaulted a boy who went to him for advice about his sexuality has been jailed for his "gross breach of trust".

Father Peter Grant had been working at Our Lady of the Annunciation church, in Thirleby Road, Burnt Oak, for six weeks when the allegations came to light in April. He then took an overdose of whisky and tablets in an attempt to commit suicide, St Albans Crown Court heard on Friday.

He was jailed for three years and four months after pleading guilty to four offences of sexual activity with a child under 16.

The 59-year-old, of Balfour Mews, Bovingdon, took advantage of the 15-year-old on three occasions between January and March this year, while working at a church in Berkhamsted.

He later took up the position in Burnt Oak and the offences do not relate to his time there.

Grant had told the boy that it was not wrong to be gay, kissed him and performed sexual acts on him.

Judge Michael Baker, sentencing, said: "Apart from the age gap, what makes this especially bad is that the boy came to you as a Catholic priest seeking sexual advice and guidance. Your acts were a gross breach of trust."

The priest was banned from working with children and must sign on the sex offenders' register. He will serve half his sentence before he is eligible for parole.