The Vatican will make the arguments in a motion to dismiss a federal lawsuit on jurisdictional grounds filed in Louisville, Ky., but it could affect other efforts to sue the Holy See.
The Vatican's U.S. attorney, Jeffrey Lena, said it will include a response to claims that the 1962 document "Crimen Sollicitationis" — Latin for "crimes of solicitation" — barred bishops from reporting abuse to police.
Lena said Sunday there is no evidence the document was even known to the archdiocese in question — much less used — and that regardless it didn't mandate that bishops not report abusive priests.
Lena said the confidentiality imposed by Crimen did not trump civil law and was applied only in formal canonical processes, which bishops had the discretion to suspend if there was a conflict with reporting laws.
"It is important that people — particularly people who have suffered abuse — know that, contrary to what some plaintiffs' lawyers have consistently told the media, the canon law did not bar reporting of these crimes to the civil authorities," Lena told the AP. Continue Reading.
Monday, May 17, 2010
Vatican Defends Claims It Hid Evidence in Sex Abuse
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