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Bishop Finn strikes deal with prosecutor to avoid new indictment

Catholic World News - November 15, 2011

Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, Missouri, has reached an agreement with a local prosecutor that allows the bishop to escape a 2nd indictment on criminal charges of failing to report evidence of sexual abuse.

Bishop Finn, who was indicted in October by a Jackson County prosecutor, entered into a 5-year diversion program with the prosecutor in neighboring Clay Country. The agreement will give the prosecutor effective supervisory control over diocesan programs to prevent sexual abuse.

“This will be a learning experience for the bishop,” said Clay County prosecutor Daniel White, who will receive monthly reports from the bishop during the 5-year period. Bishop Finn—who was in Baltimore attending a meeting of the US bishops’ conference when the deal was announced—released as statement saying that he was “grateful for this opportunity to resolve this matter.”

Bishop Finn now becomes the 4th American prelate to strike a bargain with prosecutors, giving public officials some control over diocesan affairs in order to escape prosecution. Similar deals were struck by Bishop John McCormack of Manchester, New Hampshire, in 2001; Bishop Thomas O’Brien of Phoenix and Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk of Cincinnat in 2003; and Bishop Daniel Walsh of Santa Rosa, California, in 2006. Bishops O’Brien and Walsh later resigned; Archbishop Pilarczyk and Bishop McCormack remained in office until reaching retirement age.

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  • Posted by: jflare293129 - Nov. 15, 2011 8:32 PM ET USA

    Typical. Due to minor concerns, a civil prosecutor now has the authority to badger a diocese. ..And SNAP themselves STILL have no accountability to anyone besides themselves! ..And academia STILL has no reason to admit that sexual license and promiscuity may create problems.... Can we really be surprised that so few of us have very little respect for law enforcement anymore?

  • Posted by: hartwood01 - Nov. 15, 2011 7:47 PM ET USA

    How nice for Bishop Finn,he gets a high priced lawyer at our expense and get his hand slapped. Typical behavior from the privileged class. No wonder SNAP is angry.

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