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French Cardinal Barbarin will face prosecution for failure to report sexual abuse

September 20, 2017

» Continue to this story on AFP

CWN Editor's Note: Cardinal Philippe Barbarin of Lyon will face criminal charges for an alleged failure to report accusations of abuse against a priest in his archdiocese. The cardinal will face trial next April, along with six other priests who reportedly had knowledge of the abuse complaints against Father Bernard Preynat.

Cardinal Barbarin has consistently denied covering up evidence of abuse. He has explained that a previous archbishop had returned the priest to active ministry after handling complaints dating back to the 1980s, and when new complaints were lodged, Cardinal Barbarin informed public authorities and suspended the accused priest.

The decision to prosecute the cardinal reverses an earlier decision by a French prosecutor, who announced last year that “the investigation did not demonstrate any criminal offense.”

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