November 23, 2020
By Jay Tokasz
New York Attorney General Letitia James on Monday sued the Buffalo Diocese, along with retired Bishop Richard J. Malone and retired Auxiliary Bishop Edward M. Grosz, alleging that diocese leaders protected more than two dozen priests accused of child sexual abuse by not referring their cases to the Vatican for potential removal from the priesthood.
The civil lawsuit filed in State Supreme Court in New York County accused Malone and Grosz of misusing charitable assets by supporting priests the diocese considered to have committed sexual abuse.
The lawsuit was accompanied by the release of a 218-page report on the attorney general’s two-year investigation into Catholic dioceses across the state, with a focus on allegations of a coverup of improper sexual conduct by diocesan priests in the Buffalo Diocese.
The investigation found that Buffalo Diocese leaders determined sex abuse complaints to be credible, but sheltered the accused priests from public disclosure by deeming them “unassignable” and allowed them to retire or go on medical leave, rather than face referral to the Vatican for laicization.
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