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Continued: May 13: Pedophile teacher abused scores as clues missed; killed himself in Minn.

  • Article by: MICHAEL WEISSENSTEIN , Associated Press
  • Last update: May 17, 2014 - 9:59 PM

"We don't know who was drugged. Right now we're just listening," superintendent Hedger said. "There's an enormous sense of betrayal ... He was one of the most popular, if not the most popular, teachers in the school."

A woman answering a phone registered in Jean and Bill Vahey's name hung up without speaking when called by an Associated Press reporter. His brothers and sons also could not be reached for comment.

Schools where Vahey taught are reviewing their background check policies and security procedures. Jane Larsson, executive director of the Council of International Schools, said a group of six international education associations was examining how schools could close loopholes allowing pedophiles to move from country to country without being detected by background checks or other reports.

"When this kind of thing happens it's a shock to everyone and it mobilizes action," she said.

Teacher recruiting firms are conducting a similar joint review.

In the meantime, one of the men molested by Vahey in the Westminster, California, swimming pool as a 9-year-old boy said that learning what had happened since then revived terrible memories.

"It certainly bothers me that a person like that would be left unsupervised and obviously not tracked over the last 45 years now," the man said, his voice growing unsteady. "I find it troubling. I guess the question is: How can the system allow that to happen?"

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Associated Press writer Michael Weissenstein reported this story from Mexico City and Tami Abdollah reported from Los Angeles. AP writers Luis Manuel Galeano in Managua, Nicaragua; Adam Schreck in Dubai; Margie Mason and Niniek Karmini in Jakarta; Joshua Goodman in Caracas, Venezuela; Jill Lawless and Sylvia Hui in London; and Carson Walker in Luverne, Minnesota, contributed to this report.

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Michael Weissenstein on Twitter: https://twitter.com/mweissenstein

Tami Abdollah on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/latams

  • related content

  • This combination of photos provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation shows William James Vahey in 1995, left, and 1986.

  • An outside view of the Southbank International School in central London where suspected child molester William James Vahey taught for a four-year term, Thursday, April 24, 2014. British police is helping with a FBI global investigation to identify and trace victims of a suspected pedophile teacher, William James Vahey, who killed himself in March in Luverne Minnesota. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)

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