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Former Boston Cardinal escapes charges


Leading figures in the Boston's Archdiocese will not face criminal charges for allowing abusive priests to remain in their jobs, according to the state attorney general's office.

A grand jury convened by Massachusetts Attorney General Thomas Reilly has investigated whether the former Archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Bernard Law, and some of his senior aides could be held criminally responsible for moving priests from parish to parish when they knew of sex abuse allegations.

A spokesman for Mr Reilly confirmed that no criminal charges would be forthcoming, adding that the attorney general would present a detailed report of his investigations later in the week.

Cardinal Law resigned last December amid heavy criticism.

Mr Reilly said earlier this year that it would be difficult to indict church supervisors for allowing abusive priests to remain in parish work because of the weak child protection laws in place in Massachusetts when the abuse took place.

His report is said to suggest changes to prevent future abuse - including increasing penalties for failing to report suspected abuse and getting the church and laity to work more closely together to
prevent abuse.

SOURCE
BBC

LINKS
No Charges for Boston Church Leaders (AP)
Boston Globe: Spotlight on Abuse
Indictments ruled out in church probe (Boston Globe)
Archdiocese of Boston
Boston's new sex abuse troubleshooter (National Catholic Reporter)

Cardinal [Cormac Murphy-O'Connor of Westminster] Cleared Over Claims of Abuse Cover-up (Zenit)


22 Jul 2003