Co Kerry priest Neil Horan has been defrocked after a meeting with the Archbishop of Southwark in London.

Mr Horan will no longer be able to call himself Father after he was laicised.

The 57-year-old came to wide public attention after his disruption of the men's marathon at the Athens Olympics last August.

He also dashed on to the track at the Silverstone Grand Prix in 2003, a stunt for which he subsequently served a two-month jail sentence. 

Last October Mr Horan was cleared in London of charges of indecency against a seven-year-old girl in 1991.

After today's meeting, Mr Horan said he had refused to sign any papers removing him from the priesthood because he did not think his views on the bible were wrong.

He said: 'I completely reject this decision. I appeal to the much higher court of heaven and the court of Jesus Christ. I now cannot preach, I cannot give out communion, I am little more than a pagan.'

He added: 'I feel extremely let down, I have given my life to the church and I feel terrible about how they have handled the whole situation. I feel it was unchristian and uncatholic.'