Catholic Bishop Accused of Perjury over Abuse Claims

Dutch News
January 4, 2012

A man who claims to have been sexually abused as a child by a Catholic priest has made a formal complaint against cardinal Ad Simonis for perjury, Trouw reports on Wednesday afternoon.

The man accuses the cardinal of lying when he told a court hearing in Middelburg he did not know that children were being abused by church officials.

'I am convinced that Simonis knew about the abuse of children but did not say anything during the hearing. He also knew about the abuse at the time it was taking place,' the man told local news website Breda Dichtbij.

A recent church commission into the sexual abuse scandal concluded that church officials, bishops and lay people were aware of what was going on but failed to take action to protect children.

The commission was set up by the Catholic church in March 2010 after the sexual abuse scandal broke in the Netherlands and hundreds of victims came forward. Over 2,000 people have now registered their abuse with the authorities and a number of cases will be taken to court.

The police have confirmed a complaint has been made, Trouw said.


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