A north Queensland priest has been charged with historical child sex offences dating back to 1969.
Father David Lancini, 77, has been charged with eight counts of indecent treatment of boys under 14.
He retired from the priesthood after 49 years in 2020.
He spent decades in Townsville after serving in parishes in Charters Towers, Ayr, Mount Isa and Hughenden.
The Diocese of Townsville said Lancini "strongly denies" the allegations.
"The Diocese of Townsville is aware of Fr Dave Lancini being charged with historic offences dating back to 1969," a statement said.
"Fr Dave Lancini strongly denies any involvement in the alleged offences.
"Fr Dave Lancini is currently not involved in any public ministry until such time as the legal proceedings has concluded.
"The Diocese of Townsville has full confidence in the legal system."
He is due to appear in Townsville Magistrates Court on December 5.
Australian Associated Press