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An independent report revealed on Monday that at least 610 children had been sexually assaulted by around 100 German Church priests in the diocese of Münster. This edifying study once again points to the silence of church officials who have “stifled” these pedophile cases.
Yet another child crime scandal comes to the rescue of the German Catholic Church. Six hundred and ten children have been victims of sexual abuse committed by religious in the diocese of Münster in seventy-five years, according to an independent report presented Monday, June 13.
The actual number of victims in this northwestern German diocese could be as high as 6,000 according to this report. A “frightening balance sheet” evokes Klaus Grosse Kracht one of the authors.
The number of priests implicated amounts to 183, according to this report written by five experts from the University of Münster, in western Germany, who examined cases of pedocrime between 1945 and 2020.
In total, 196 clergymen have been identified, more than 4% of the clerics of this bishopric, and 90% of them have never been prosecuted.
Officials “suffocated, kept silent”
In the 1960s and 1970s, an average of two acts of pedophilia were committed per week in this diocese, according to this report, which follows several other edifying studies on the extent of pedocrime in the German Catholic Church since the end of the Second World War. world.
In the investigation published on Monday, Klaus Grosse Kracht denounced the efforts to systematically conceal these sexual abuses. Officials “suffocated, kept silent and only intervened in a superficial way when it was a question of avoiding a public scandal”, he asserted.
The scandal of sexual assault committed in the Catholic Church has affected Germany like many other countries and severely implicated the pope emeritus Benedict XVI when he exercised as archbishop in Bavaria.
In the Archdiocese of Munich-Freising between 1945 and 2019, at least 497 people, mostly young boys and teenagers, had been victims of sexual assault, according to a previous report published in January. The author, a law firm, accused the pontiff emeritus of doing nothing in several cases to prevent child abuse. Benedict XVI then reaffirmed that he had never concealed acts of sexual assault.
Several thousand casualties according to other reports
Another damning report, made public in March 2021, also revealed that hundreds of minors suffered sexual violence in the diocese of Cologne, the largest in the country, between 1975 and 2018.
In 2018, several university researchers, funded by the Church, but without access to the archives, had drawn up an alarming inventory: at least 3,677 children were victims of sexual violence in Germany between 1946 and 2014.