Catholic Church underestimated sex abuse allegations and failed to investigate, state attorney general says

The Independent

December 20, 2018

By Michelle Boorstein

Top Illinois official argues investigators found hundreds more accusations to those deemed credible

Illinois’ attorney general’s office on Wednesday accused the Catholic Church of dramatically low-balling the scope of allegations of clergy sex abuse, saying her investigators found at least 500 additional accusations against priests and clergy – compared with the 185 cases the church has found credible.

Lisa Madigan’s office acknowledged on Wednesday that a charge that has been found credible is not the same thing as a simple accusation. However, she alleged in a statement that a probe her office opened into the Church in August is finding Catholic leaders are failing to dig deep into the guilt of their clerics. The probe “has revealed that allegations frequently have not been adequately investigated by the dioceses or not investigated at all,” the statement said.

Some state Catholic leaders, under siege during a year of global scandal over bishops’ handling of abuse cases, pushed back. The crux of Ms Madigan’s announcement was unfair and “false”, said William Kunkel, counsel for the Chicago archdiocese.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.