Clergyman sacked after woman claimed clip showed him cheating on wife

Vicar in ‘sex tape’ storm: Naive clergyman is sacked after parishioner claimed film clip showed him cheating on his wife

  • Woman claimed she became pregnant after allegedly having sex with Rev William Bulloch, 51
  • He has now been ordered to leave the parish of St James the Great in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex 
  • At the disciplinary tribunal he admitted failing to seek the advice of the diocese after refusing the woman pastoral support

A Church of England vicar has been sacked after he failed to disclose the extent of his friendship with a parishioner who claimed he was cheating on his wife with her.

The mother-of-three claimed she became pregnant after allegedly having sex with Rev William Bulloch, 51, pictured, at her home.

The married father avoided being defrocked in January after a church tribunal ruled the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had failed to prove her allegations.

Rev William Bulloch, 51, has been sacked after he failed to disclose the extent of his friendship with a parishioner who claimed he was cheating on his wife with her

A mother-of-three claimed she became pregnant after allegedly having sex with Rev William Bulloch (pictured right with his wife), 51, at her home 

But Mr Bulloch has now been ordered to leave the parish of St James the Great in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, because he tried to keep her claims from church bosses.

Tribunal chairman Rev Mark Bishop said: ‘The misconduct has fundamentally undermined his work as a priest in this parish.’

The pair became close when the woman pretended to have a terminal illness and faked emails from doctors begging the vicar to grant her ‘dying wish’ to see out her days with a family, the tribunal heard.


At the disciplinary tribunal he admitted failing to seek the advice of the diocese after refusing the woman pastoral support and using ‘foul and obscene language’ with her

Mr Bulloch allowed her to move into the vicarage with his wife and children but realised she had tricked him when he saw the woman, who wore an oxygen mask and claimed to be wheelchair-bound, walking unaided into a hospital.

After moving out she began making claims about the affair, which was alleged to have taken place between late 2016 and early 2017.

Evidence in the case included an email from the woman to Mr Bulloch claiming she was pregnant and had a video of them having sex.

Mr Bulloch replied: ‘You are threatening me with blackmail over something that is impossible. I have been nothing but kind to you and do not know why you would treat me this way. I will not be speaking to you again after tonight.’

Mr Bulloch has now been ordered to leave the parish of St James the Great in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, because he tried to keep her claims from church bosses 

The woman sent the ‘sex tape’ to Mr Bulloch’s seniors in 2017 when he refused to continue as her priest. But the panel ruled nothing could be seen or heard on it and noted there was no proof of a baby.

Mr Bulloch, who denied the relationship, was cleared by a majority verdict.

But at the disciplinary tribunal he admitted failing to seek the advice of the diocese after refusing the woman pastoral support and using ‘foul and obscene language’ with her.

He must complete an anger management course within six months of any return to a ministry and train in safeguarding and respecting boundaries.

Criticising Mr Bulloch for acting ‘extremely naively’, Mr Bishop said: ‘He should have involved the diocesan authorities in her care and fully disclosed what had happened.

‘Instead, he did not tell the diocesan authorities and, when they did ask him about it, he minimised the contact that he had with her and did not tell the truth.’ 

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