Pope’s efforts to stop church child abuse appear to unravel, Vatican riven by internal battle over handling of child abuse claims

February 17, 2016 Comments Off on Pope’s efforts to stop church child abuse appear to unravel, Vatican riven by internal battle over handling of child abuse claims

Pope’s efforts to stop church child abuse appear to unravel
Will Carless, GlobalPost  February 15, 2016

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — A member of a commission set up by Pope Francis to advise him on child abuse says the group is a “token body” exercising in “smoke and mirrors” that won’t help children stay safe from abusive priests.

Peter Saunders, the commission member, is now on a leave of absence as he considers whether to continue with an effort he says he has lost faith in.

Meanwhile, new Catholic bishops are still being taught they’re not obliged to report cases of child abuse by priests to the police.

The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, which Francis set up with much fanfare in 2014, was supposed to issue guidelines for the Vatican on how to deal with child abuse. But the body was never consulted about the training for new bishops on exactly that topic.

These are just some of the signs that Francis’ reform efforts, and his pledge to clean up the Catholic Church’s most damaging crisis, seem to be unraveling before they’ve even really gotten started.

The problems come as Pope Francis pays a visit to Latin America, a region where, as GlobalPost has reported, the church is accused of reassigning and protecting many alleged predator priests. Among the latest scandals in the region, Chileans are outraged that the pope appointed a bishop accused of shielding the country’s most despised pedophile priest from investigation….
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/02/15/popes-efforts-stop-church-child-abuse-appear-unravel/80394122/

Vatican riven by internal battle over handling of child abuse claims
Rift comes amid signs that special commission created by Pope Francis to handle issue is being sidelined by senior church officials in Rome
Stephanie Kirchgaessner in Rome Tuesday 16 February 2016

A battle is being waged within the Vatican over how senior clergy ought to handle accusations of sexual abuse amid signs that a special commission created by Pope Francis to handle the issue is being sidelined by senior church officials in Rome.

The rift was exposed after a report in the Guardian about a training course that was offered to new bishops last year in which a controversial French monsignor instructed them that it was “not necessarily” their duty to report accusations of abuse to law enforcement authorities if local laws did not require it.

That stance was rejected this week by Pope Francis’s point man on abuse issues, Boston cardinal Seán O’Malley, who heads a special pontifical commission to protect minors.

“We, the president and the members of the commission, wish to affirm that our obligations under civil law must certainly be followed, but even beyond these civil requirements, we all have a moral and ethical responsibility to report suspected abuse to the civil authorities who are charged with protecting our society,” he said in a statement on Monday.

O’Malley also said that the special commission was committed to “extensive education efforts” within local churches since its founding two years ago, and that its members had reiterated their “willingness to provide this material at courses offered in Rome”, including at the training courses for new bishops and the offices of the Roman Curia, or bureaucracy.

But it is clear that these offers have not been accepted….
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/16/vatican-riven-by-internal-battle-over-handling-of-child-abuse-claims

Two of Bill Cosby’s accusers join push to have entire deposition unsealed, Vatican delays trial of pope’s ex-diplomat accused of child porn, pedophilia, Only Half of Abused Children Evaluated for Occult Fracture

July 14, 2015 Comments Off on Two of Bill Cosby’s accusers join push to have entire deposition unsealed, Vatican delays trial of pope’s ex-diplomat accused of child porn, pedophilia, Only Half of Abused Children Evaluated for Occult Fracture

Two of Bill Cosby’s accusers join push to have entire deposition unsealed

Beth Ferrier and Rebecca Lynn Neal, ‘Jane Does’ in the 2005 case, join motion as Neal also spoke out against National Enquirer for pulling an interview with her

Nicky Woolf

Monday 13 July 2015

Two more of Bill Cosby’s accusers have joined a motion to have the whole of a deposition unsealed from a 2005 case in which the former comedian testified to having given a woman the sedative quaaludes before having sex with her.

Bill Cosby’s defenders split after revelation comedian drugged women

One of them has also attacked the National Enquirer for allegedly suppressing a 2005 interview with her in exchange for an exclusive from Cosby about his daughter’s drug use.

Beth Ferrier and Rebecca Lynn Neal were unidentified witnesses – known as “Jane Does” – in a 2005 case in which Cosby was sued by Andrea Constand, the first of more than two dozen women to come forward with allegations of sexual abuse against the comedian.

Last week a judge granted a motion by the Associated Press to unseal part of Cosby’s deposition. Constand has now been joined by Ferrier and Neal in a motion to have the rest of the deposition, which has so far been barred from public view, unsealed.

In a statement Gloria Allred, the lawyer representing both Ferrier and Neal, said she was concerned the partial testimony, “if believed”, would cause reputational damage to her clients.

….“The National Enquirer, more than any other publication, was unflinching in our aggressive coverage of allegations against Mr Cosby beginning in 2000 when everyone else avoided the story,” a spokesman told the Wrap. “We continue to remain aggressive in our reporting today and stand by the integrity of our coverage of this story which we have taken the lead on for more than a decade.”
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/13/bill-cosby-deposition-quaaludes-motion-unseal

Only Half of Abused Children Evaluated for Occult Fracture
Jenni Laidman   July 13, 2015

Despite some 20 years of recommendations to perform a skeletal survey on infants and toddlers with injuries associated with abuse, hospital personnel failed to conduct such surveys in roughly half of suspected abuse cases, according to results from a study published online July 13 in Pediatrics.

Joanne N. Wood, MD, MSHP, from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, and colleagues examined data from 4486 children younger than 2 years with a diagnosis of abuse or injuries often associated with abuse at 366 hospitals from 2009 to 2013.

The study indicated that 48% of children with an abuse diagnosis and 51% of infants with traumatic
brain injury were evaluated with a skeletal survey for occult fracture. Only 53% of infants with femur fractures were examined for further fractures, the researchers found.

Previous studies suggest that skeletal surveys would have revealed occult fractures in approximately 25% to 30% of the children in the study, which means about 1 in every 7 or 8 children might have had an undiagnosed occult fracture, the authors report….

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/847835

Vatican delays trial of pope’s ex-diplomat accused of child porn, pedophilia
By Faith Karimi, Delia Gallagher and Hada Messia, CNN
Sat July 11, 2015

A former papal ambassador accused of sexually abusing minors has been hospitalized in an intensive care unit — pushing back his trial once set to start Saturday in Vatican City.

Jozef Wesolowski, 66, was under house arrest in Vatican City when he fell ill Friday night and was rushed to a public hospital.

A judge held a short hearing and adjourned Wesolowski’s trial to a yet undetermined date, the Vatican Press Office said. It did not provide any details on his condition.

Wesolowski, 66, is the highest-ranking Catholic official arrested for alleged sexual abuse of minors.

In addition to sexual abuse allegations, he is accused of possession of child pornography during his time as papal nuncio — or ambassador — to the Dominican Republic. The maximum punishment for these crimes could be 9 years in prison, although sentencing is entirely at the discretion of the judges.

The Vatican, which operates as a city-state, has its own judicial system. This is the first trial on charges of sex abuse to be heard by the Vatican tribunal, which is composed of 3 lay Italian judges….

Before arriving in the Dominican Republic seven years ago, Wesolowski was nuncio to Bolivia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

He began his career as a priest in Poland in 1972, and became a bishop in 2000….
http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/11/europe/vatican-sex-abuse-trial/

Mass grave of up to 800 dead babies exposed in County Galway, Pope to meet abuse victims with Boston’s O’Malley, Re-Watching Woody Allen The newly-chilling themes that you can see throughout his movies

May 27, 2014 Comments Off on Mass grave of up to 800 dead babies exposed in County Galway, Pope to meet abuse victims with Boston’s O’Malley, Re-Watching Woody Allen The newly-chilling themes that you can see throughout his movies

Mass grave of up to 800 dead babies exposed in County Galway
Cahir O’Doherty May 26,2014

According to a report in the Irish Mail on Sunday, a mass grave has been located beside a former home for unmarried mothers and babies in County Galway. The grave is believed to contain the bodies of up to eight hundred babies, buried on the former grounds of the institution known locally as “The Home” in Tuam, north of Galway city, between 1925 and 1961

Run by the Bon Secours nuns, “The Home” housed thousands of unmarried mothers and their “illegitimate” children over those years.

According to Irish Mail on Sunday the causes of death listed for “as many as 796 children” included “malnutrition, measles, convulsions, tuberculosis, gastroenteritis and pneumonia.”

The babies were usually buried without a coffin in a plot that had once housed “a water tank,” the report claims. No memorials were erected, the site was left unmarked and unmourned.

The staggering mortality rate of “The Home” was apparently replicated elsewhere in Ireland….
http://www.irishcentral.com/opinion/cahirodoherty/Mass-grave-of-up-to-800-dead-babies-exposed-in-County-Galway-.html

Pope to meet abuse victims with Boston’s O’Malley
By John L. Allen Jr. Globe Staff   May 26, 2014

ROME — Pope Francis said Monday that he plans to celebrate a Mass with a small group of victims of sexual abuse in the coming weeks and to hold a private meeting to hear from them, a session in which Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston will also take part.

Francis also revealed that three Catholic bishops are under Vatican investigation for matters related to sexual abuse, citing those inquiries as proof that there will be no “daddy’s boys” in the clergy who enjoy special privileges on his watch.

Francis did not make it clear whether those three bishops are being investigated for abuse they are alleged to have committed or for an alleged failure to respond properly to possible abuse by others….
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2014/05/26/pope-francis-meet-abuse-victims-with-boston-malley/6iJGjmYr3ujHBmXpQLRpTN/story.html

Re-Watching Woody Allen The newly-chilling themes that you can see throughout his movies By Stephen Marche on February 4, 2014
….Nobody except Dylan Farrow and Woody Allen knows what happened in that attic, and no one else ever will. But the sheer vividness with which Farrow recounts the experience, as well as the forum in which she does so, is enough to make even the most ardent fan reevaluate an artist’s entire body of work, especially one as personal as Allen’s.

So what happens when you go looking for evidence of sex crimes in Woody Allen movies? If you look, you find it, again, and again, and again….
http://www.esquire.com/blogs/culture/dylan-farrow-woody-allen-movies

Woody Allen’s lawyer blames ‘vengeful lover’ for child molestation controversy, USF researchers unearthed 55 bodies from Dozier, more than state claimed, Pope covered crimes?

February 4, 2014 Comments Off on Woody Allen’s lawyer blames ‘vengeful lover’ for child molestation controversy, USF researchers unearthed 55 bodies from Dozier, more than state claimed, Pope covered crimes?

Woody Allen’s lawyer blames ‘vengeful lover’ for child molestation controversy
By Alan Duke, CNN Mon February 3, 2014

Los Angeles (CNN) — Renewed accusations that Woody Allen molested an adopted daughter two decades ago were “engineered by a vengeful lover,” the filmmaker’s lawyer told CNN on Monday.

The allegations were “fully vetted and rejected by independent authorities,” Allen attorney Elkan Abramowitz said in a written statement.

The controversy dates back to 1992 after the revelation that Allen, then 56, was having an affair with Soon-Yi Previn, Mia Farrow’s 19-year-old adopted daughter with composer Andre Previn. Allen and Previn married five years later.

Allen’s legal and public relations teams scrambled to respond to an open letter written by Dylan Farrow and published by The New York Times on Saturday recounting her allegation that Allen sexually assaulted her when she was a child.

“What’s your favorite Woody Allen movie? Before you answer, you should know: when I was seven years old, Woody Allen took me by the hand and led me into a dim, closet-like attic on the second floor of our house,” Farrow wrote. “He told me to lay on my stomach and play with my brother’s electric train set. Then he sexually assaulted me.”….

Acting Justice Elliott Wilk of New York’s State Supreme Court “said it was unlikely that Mr. Allen could be prosecuted for sexual abuse based on the evidence,” the newspaper reported. “But while a team of experts concluded that Dylan was not abused, the judge said he found the evidence inconclusive.”

A former prosecutor who decided against pressing charges in the case declined to comment on the details in Dylan Farrow’s letter Sunday.

“As a prosecutor I really can’t comment on the substance of the statement of this now young woman. As a father of a child not too much older than this young woman, I can only say I hope she finds some peace and solace in the way she’s expressing herself,” former Connecticut State’s Attorney Frank Maco said. “I hope she had access to my written statement of decision. My statement is as valid today as it was 20 years ago.”

In 1993, Maco — who’s since retired — told reporters he believed there was probable cause to arrest Allen. But he said he decided not to press charges, with Mia Farrow’s support, “rather than exposing the child to possible harm.”….
http://www.cnn.com/2014/02/03/showbiz/woody-allen-dylan-farrow-letter/

USF researchers unearthed 55 bodies from Dozier, more than state claimed  Ben Montgomery, Times Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
TAMPA

….Researchers from the University of South Florida are trying to help. They announced Tuesday they have exhumed the remains of 55 boys who died at the notorious state-run reform school in the Panhandle town of Marianna.

That’s 24 more than the 31 the Florida Department of Law Enforcement found during a cursory investigation in 2009 on orders from then-Gov. Charlie Crist. The FDLE relied on incomplete school records and did not use ground-penetrating radar to map the cemetery.

The number even exceeds USF’s earlier estimate of roughly 50, which was based on ground-penetrating radar….

The state closed the facility in June 2011 after a century-long cycle of scandal and short-lived reform. The school, 60 miles west of Tallahassee, was founded in 1900 and was once the largest of its kind in the nation. It has been known as the Florida Industrial School for Boys, the Florida School for Boys and the Dozier School for Boys. Over the years, kids were locked in irons, beaten with a leather strap in a building called the White House, locked in isolation for as long as three weeks and hog-tied.

In October 2008, five former wards went public with stories of extreme physical and sexual abuse at the hands of guards. They were featured in a Tampa Bay Times series called For Their Own Good. More than 500 men have come forward with similar stories of being abused by staff at the school, according to a lawyer with Masterson & Hoag, the St. Petersburg firm representing the men….
http://www.tampabay.com/news/politics/stateroundup/usf-researchers-unearthed-55-bodies-from-dozier-more-than-state-claimed/2163015


Pope Bergoglio child trafficked; Pope Benedict, Queen Elizabeth covered crimes?

February 3, 2014  Judy Byington Saratoga Springs Child Abuse Examiner

Today Catholic Pope Francis Bergoglio faced charges of trafficking children from Catholic orphanages to kidnapping networks during Argentine’s 1970s Junta Dirty War. Parents of the children disappeared at the hands of the Junta military. http://youtu.be/vNTTx7gZHS4

http://www.examiner.com/article/pope-bergoglio-child-trafficked-pope-benedict-queen-elizabeth-covered-crimes

UN panel confronts Vatican on child sex abuse by clergy, Saratoga Springs Child Abuse Examiner Judy Byington

January 17, 2014 Comments Off on UN panel confronts Vatican on child sex abuse by clergy, Saratoga Springs Child Abuse Examiner Judy Byington

Vatican tells UN hearing ‘no excuse’ for child abuse
Vatican has acknowledged there can be “no excuse” for child abuse, confronted for the first time at length and in public over the global priest sex abuse scandal

By Nick Squires
16 Jan 2014

Victims of clerical abuse accused the Vatican of obfuscating and using “disingenous” arguments as representatives on Thursday came in for unprecedented public questioning by the United Nations over the Catholic Church’s cover-up of the rape of thousands of children by sexually abusive priests.

In testimony to a UN committee in Geneva, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s representative, showed a degree of remorse over church sex abuse scandals, saying that “such crimes can never be justified”.

But he reiterated an argument that the Vatican has long used — that the Holy See cannot be held responsible for the actions of clergy members in countries around the world because its remit extends only to those living and working within the Vatican City State, a tiny sovereign territory where less than 40 children reside.

Priests were “not functionaries of the Vatican but citizens of their countries and fall under the jurisdiction of their own countries”, he said.

The argument was dismissed by campaigners, who said it was clear that the Vatican is the hub of the world-wide Catholic Church and issues orders to dioceses around the globe….

The Vatican has been condemned for moving abusive clergy from one diocese or parish to another, destroying or withholding evidence and failing to report suspected abuse to the police.

“The new Pope seems to be making encouraging gestures in a lot of areas, but he’s doing nothing to even begin to expose — much less reverse —decades of selfish church cover-ups that endanger kids and protect predators. It’s very disappointing. What we heard today felt like more of the same,” Ms Blaine said.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/vaticancityandholysee/10576203/Vatican-tells-UN-hearing-no-excuse-for-child-abuse.html

UN panel confronts Vatican on child sex abuse by clergy 
16 January 2014
….The Vatican has been confronted publicly for the first time over the sexual abuse of children by clergy, at a UN hearing in Geneva.

….Last month, the Vatican refused a request from the UN’s Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) for data on abuse, on the grounds that it only released such information if requested to do so by another country as part of legal proceedings.

….”The view of committee is that the best way to prevent abuses is to reveal old ones – openness instead of sweeping offences under the carpet,” Kirsten Sandberg, chairwoman of the 18-strong CRC, told the Vatican delegation.

“It seems to date your procedures are not very transparent.”

The Vatican was asked why it continued to describe abuse as an offence against morals rather than a crime against children.

….Archbishop Silvano Tomasi said: “To prevent abuse of minors is a real, immediate concern.”

On prosecution of offenders, he said priests were “not functionaries of the Vatican but citizens of their countries and fall under the jurisdiction of their own countries”….
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-25748952

Saratoga Springs Child Abuse Examiner Judy Byington
Judy Byington, MSW, LCSW, ret, Author, “Twenty-Two Faces: Inside the Extraordinary Life of Jenny Hill and Her Twenty-Two Multiple Personalities”; CEO Trauma Research Center and Child Abuse Recovery Speakers Bureau; Supervisor over Children Services, Alberta Mental Health; Director, Provo Utah Family Counseling Center; State of Utah Child Welfare: http://www.22faces.com  and http://www.ChildAbuseRecovery.com
http://www.examiner.com/child-abuse-in-provo/judy-byington

Pope updates Vatican law, criminalizing sex abuse, leaks, The case of Fran and Dan Keller – Fran’s Day Care, PTSD treatments

July 13, 2013 Comments Off on Pope updates Vatican law, criminalizing sex abuse, leaks, The case of Fran and Dan Keller – Fran’s Day Care, PTSD treatments

Pope updates Vatican law, criminalizing sex abuse, leaks
New laws apply to clergy, others in the city-state
By Nicole Winfield   Associated Press
July 12, 2013 VATICAN CITY

Pope Francis overhauled the laws that govern the Vatican city-state on Thursday, criminalizing leaks of Vatican information and specifically listing sexual violence, prostitution, and possession of child pornography as crimes against children that can be punished by up to 12 years in prison.

The legislation covers clergy and laypeople who live and work in Vatican City and is different from the canon law which covers the universal Catholic Church.

It was issued at a critical time, as the Vatican prepares for a grilling by a UN committee on its efforts to protect children under a key UN convention and prevent priests from sexually abusing children. The Vatican signed and ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1990 yet only now — 23 years later — has it updated its legislation to reflect some of the treaty’s core provisions….
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2013/07/11/pope-updates-vatican-law-crminalizing-sex-abuse-leaks/URHItA5fuIxJNruXaGO2jI/story.html

Fran’s Day Care Case – Randy Noblitt, PhD
The case of Fran and Dan Keller

excerpts:
“Some of the parents whose children attended the preschool became suspicious when their children returned home wearing underwear not their own, or with their clothes inside out or with their hair wet. There were always reasonable explanations: the child had an accident and was changed into clothes on hand for that purpose; or the child splashed water on herself when the children were cleaning up; and so forth. However, when one of the children made an outcry, the parents more closely scrutinized the strange behaviors some of the children had started engaging in and the aforementioned episodes, and they took their concerns to the police. The police took the concerns seriously and collected statements and evidence. The grand jury found a basis for indictment. The Kellers responded to the warrant for their arrest by fleeing the state in disguise, obtaining false identifications in their new personas, and attempting to leave the country. They were apprehended in Las Vegas, Nevada and extradited back to Travis County.”

“The case ended with the conviction of the Kellers and their sentencing to 48 years in prison each. They are in prison still, any efforts for appeal having failed to date.”

“the perspective was one of advocacy for falsely accused, persecuted, prosecuted, and convicted victims of a malicious or inept legal system that places too much trust in the stories children tell. A particular flaw in this story was the story. It was certainly not founded on anything I witnessed during my participation in the case. Evidence was not withheld from the prosecution to my knowledge. The defense was left flat-footed by their own conviction that the children would not be believed. And the advice I offered may have helped to prevent influence or contamination of the children’s testimony. The children’s stories were credible – Fran and Dan Keller’s defense was not.”

“One of the child victims, Veejay Staelin, a now 21-year old…re-asserted that he had been abused by Fran and Dan Keller.”
http://ritualabuse.us/ritualabuse/articles/frans-day-care/

Meta-analysis of the efficacy of treatments for posttraumatic stress disorder. Authors Watts BV, et al

Journal
J Clin Psychiatry. 2013 Jun;74(6):e541-50. doi: 10.4088/JCP.12r08225.

Abstract
OBJECTIVE: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an important mental health issue in terms of the number of people affected and the morbidity and functional impairment associated with the disorder. The purpose of this study was to examine the efficacy of all treatments for PTSD….

RESULTS: Effective psychotherapies included cognitive therapy, exposure therapy, and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (g = 1.63, 1.08, and 1.01, respectively). Effective pharmacotherapies included paroxetine, sertraline, fluoxetine, risperidone, topiramate, and venlafaxine (g = 0.74, 0.41, 0.43, 0.41, 1.20, and 0.48, respectively)….

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that patients and providers have a variety of options for choosing an effective treatment for PTSD. Substantial differences in study design and study participant characteristics make identification of a single best treatment difficult. Not all medications or psychotherapies are effective.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/23842024/

Pope: Stopping child sexual abuse key to ‘credibility’ of Catholic Church, Leesburg child p_rn suspect had more than 500,000 images and videos at his home

April 6, 2013 Comments Off on Pope: Stopping child sexual abuse key to ‘credibility’ of Catholic Church, Leesburg child p_rn suspect had more than 500,000 images and videos at his home

Pope: Stopping child sexual abuse key to ‘credibility’ of Catholic Church
By Philip Pullella, Reuters  Fri Apr 5, 2013

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis wants the Catholic Church to “act decisively” to root out sexual abuse of children by priests and ensure the perpetrators are punished, the Vatican said on Friday.

Francis, in a meeting with the Holy See’s doctrinal chief, Archbishop Gerhard Mueller, had declared that combating sexual abuse was important “for the Church and its credibility”, a statement said.

Francis inherited a Church mired in problems and a major scandal over priestly abuse of children. It was believed to be the first time he had taken up the issue of sex abuse with a senior member of his staff since his election on March 13….
http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/04/05/17614945-pope-stopping-child-sexual-abuse-key-to-credibility-of-catholic-church

Judge could order Leesburg child porn suspect to pay for own attorney
Friday, April 5, 2013  LEESBURG, Fla.

A man who the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said downloaded the most child pornography in the state of Florida was denied bail Friday morning.
Officers said John Shearen had more than 500,000 images and videos at his home in Leesburg.

He was arrested Thursday, on his 51st birthday, at his home in the Lakeside Pointe apartment complex, FDLE said. Agents said they identified Shearen last month while monitoring child porn websites, and they caught him at his computer Thursday morning as he was downloading more videos….

“We were able to seize anywhere from 500,000 to 1 million images and videos. They were stored on several computers and external hard drives to actually being transferred from the computers to separate DVDs, and he has a DVD collection of child pornography. So, we have a lot of work to do. Those initial cases will be charged today,” said Special Agent Jeff Duncan.

Agents said Shearen admitted his crimes….
Shearen faces 20 counts each of distribution and possession of child porn, but agents said there may be more charges filed as the investigation continues.

“He is the No. 1 person who can distribute child pornography throughout the world,” said Duncan. “And he’s been doing it.”
http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/fdle-man-who-downloaded-most-child-pornography-sta/nXCb3/

No bond for Leesburgh child porn suspect
A man who the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said downloaded the most child pornography in the state of Florida was denied bail Friday morning.
http://www.wftv.com/videos/news/no-bond-for-leesburgh-child-porn-suspect/vxQyP/

Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop, – Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word, Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials

March 22, 2013 Comments Off on Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop, – Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word, Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials

Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop By Nick Miroff, March 18, 2013

HURLINGHAM, Argentina — Father Julio Cesar Grassi was a celebrity in the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires. The young, dynamic, ­media-savvy priest networked with wealthy Argentines to fund an array of schools, orphanages and job training programs for poor and abandoned youths, winning praise from Argentine politicians and his superior, Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio.

Grassi called his foundation Felices los Niños, “Happy Children.”

Today, Grassi is a convicted sex offender who remains free on a conditional release after being sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2009 for molesting a prepubescent boy in his care.

Yet in the years after Grassi’s conviction, Bergoglio — now Pope Francis — has declined to meet with the victim of the priest’s crimes or the victims of other predations by clergy under his leadership. He did not offer personal apologies or financial restitution, even in cases in which the crimes were denounced by other members of the church and the offending priests were sent to jail….

There is no evidence that Bergoglio played a role in covering up abuse cases. Several prominent rights groups in Argentina say the archbishop went out of his way in recent years to stand with secular organizations against crimes such as sex trafficking and child prostitution. They say that Bergoglio’s resolve strengthened as new cases of molestation emerged in the archdiocese and that he eventually instructed bishops to immediately report all abuse allegations to police.

In September, after an Argentine priest from a rural area was convicted of abusing dozens of boys between 1984 and 1992, the archbishop’s office released a statement saying the case had “reaffirmed our profound shame and the immense pain that result from the grave mistakes committed by someone who should be setting the moral example.”

But during most of the 14 years that Bergoglio served as archbishop of Buenos Aires, rights advocates say, he did not take decisive action to protect children or act swiftly when molestation charges surfaced; nor did he extend apologies to the victims of abusive priests after their misconduct came to light….
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/pope-francis-was-often-quiet-on-argentine-sex-abuse-cases-as-archbishop/2013/03/18/26e7eca4-8ff6-11e2-9cfd-36d6c9b5d7ad_story.html

Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word
Nightline – November 14, 1996

TURNING POINT:  When Children Accuse – Who To Believe
Byline: Ted Koppel and Erin Haynes

ABC-Nightline – November 14, 1996

WHEN CHILDREN ACCUSE: WHO TO BELIEVE Child sex abuse is a very serious problem.

In 1994 alone 140,000 new cases were investigated and found to be real. But are innocent people being sentenced for crimes they never committed because of the testimony of the young?

Doubt over the testimony of children in sexual abuse cases has made it harder to try accused child molesters, sometimes with deadly consequences, but authorities say children do tell the truth in most cases.

TED KOPPEL: [voice-over] This week, another tragedy.

1st RESPONDENT: I don’t understand this. They- they knew. Why did they let him come into this neighborhood? Or in any other neighborhood?

TED KOPPEL: [voice-over] A convicted child molester avoids prison because there is doubt over the testimony of a child…..

STEPHEN CECI, Psychologist, Cornell University: Not only do I believe children can be reliable in sexual abuse cases, I believe the vast majority of them are reliable in those cases.

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] But Ceci says what is missing from many accounts of his work is that it is fairly difficult to convince children to make up even the most harmless stories.

STEPHEN CECI: Because in our studies we work at it very hard….

ERIN HAYES: In fact, in his studies, most of the children ultimately do not give in to interviewers’ suggestions, and while many of the interviews are about more serious subjects, medical exams, for example, they are not about sex abuse, and many in the child protection field are troubled that Ceci’s research is being applied to sex abuse cases….

STEPHEN CECI: Maybe 1 percent, 5 percent, 10 percent. I suspect it’s nowhere near the majority. My hunch is the majority of interviews done with kids by front-line workers, child protective service, law enforcement, therapists, pediatricians, are well-done….

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] But his critics point out Underwager uses his own standards for determining what is repeated and leading. For instance, he has said that interviewers’ questions like this one, “Okay … I don’t want you to say anything you can’t remember for sure,” could be considered leading. And most of the tapes he reviews come to him from defense attorneys, for whom he consults. When he testifies for them, he says, he is paid $2,500 a day. Underwager admits he has no way to known if the children’s accounts of abuse in the cases he reviews are actually false. [interviewing] How do you know, in each of these cases, that the abuse did not happen?

RALPH UNDERWAGER: I don’t. That’s not my function. That’s the function of the justice system.

ROB PARRISH: If that’s the case, then there’s no reason for him to be expressing an opinion in the justice system, any more than any of the rest of us. I mean, you could call anybody in that circumstance to say, “I’ve viewed the tape and I think it’s a bad interview, so therefore I think this child’s probably not telling the truth.”

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] At least 10 courts have disallowed Underwager’s testimony. One ruled he “…did not have bone fide qualifications…” as a researcher. Another said his work “…was not scientifically reliable…” Underwager does continue to testify, which concerns many of his critics, who say is expertise is colored by what they see as a sympathetic view toward pedophiles. In a Dutch publication [Paidika] three years ago, Underwager said, “Paedophiles need to become more positive and make the claim that paedophilia is an acceptable expression of God’s will for love and will among human beings.” Underwager says he has always believed sex between adults and children is harmful, but says to help treat pedophiles, they must first be encouraged to openly proclaim their sexuality….

MARK ELLIS, National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse: His methods and theories are not accepted by others in his field, and have been subject to a great deal of criticism by others in his field.

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] Prosecutors are also critical of Dr. Gardner, who not only testifies, but publishes and markets his own books on child sex abuse, books often quoted in court cases.

ATTORNEY: [law firm videotape] Now, I want to talk to you about the most common cause of false accusations.

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] In this videotape produced by a law firm, an attorney cites from Dr. Gardner’s research Gardner’s conclusion that false allegations of child sex abuse are commonplace in custody disputes.

ATTORNEY: [law firm videotape] This phenomena [sic] has been examined in research and it’s now been given the name “parental alienation syndrome.”

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] That disorder, however, cannot be found in the standard manual of psychiatric diagnoses. It is a term Dr. Gardner coined himself, based mainly on his own experience as a psychiatrist. But the largest study done on the subject to date found that false allegations of child sexual abuse rarely surface in custody disputes [“…less than 2% of cases involved an allegation of sexual abuse.” Dr. Gardner declined a videotaped interview for this report, but he sells tapes of his own, as well, in which he describes his criteria to help determine whether a child’s allegation of sexual abuse is true or false. Among his criteria?

Dr. RICHARD GARDNER: [videotape] If it sounds incredible, it’s probably not true. In extreme cases, children who are sexually abused become like little street-smart sluts. I believe that children who are false accusers are going to have a higher incidence of reading mystery stories.

ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] Dr. Gardner concedes no one has scientifically tested his criteria, not even he.

ROB PARRISH: Those tests are not based on scientific reality. They’re not verified, they’re not validated in any way.
http://theawarenesscenter.blogspot.com/2011/02/turning-point-when-children-accuse-who.html

Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials
Reuters March 21, 2013 By Laura Zuckerman

SALMON, Idaho, March 21 (Reuters) – The mysterious disappearance of about 30 dogs in southern Idaho has baffled animal control officials and raised concerns among dog lovers after a German shepherd was found with its head crushed in a suspected ritual killing.

The missing canines range widely in size, breed and age.

“The dogs seem to vanish into thin air,” said Debbie Blackwood, director of the animal shelter in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Officials say some 30 dogs have gone missing in recent months in Twin Falls and nearby communities in an agricultural region in south-central Idaho known as the Magic Valley….

The dog, found in an area known as the Devil’s Corral in neighboring Jerome County, appeared to have suffered a “ritualistic execution” ….
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sns-rt-usa-dogsidahol1n0cd0be-20130320,0,3597508.story

Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests, Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law, Abuse inquiry to proceed under changed law

March 20, 2013 Comments Off on Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests, Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law, Abuse inquiry to proceed under changed law

Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests

By Associated Press, Tuesday, March 19, 2013

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Activists against abuse by Roman Catholic clergy urged Pope Francis on Tuesday to apologize for what they called the Argentine church’s protection of two priests who were eventually convicted of sexually assaulting children.

The U.S.-based Bishop Accountability group cited the case of Father Julio Cesar Grassi, who ran the “Happy Children” foundation and was convicted of pedophilia in 2008, and Father Napoleon Sasso, convicted in 2007 of abusing girls at a soup kitchen in suburban Buenos Aires.

The Buenos Aires archbishop’s office didn’t immediately respond Tuesday.

The pope’s authorized biographer, Sergio Rubin, told The Associated Press before Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected pope last week that he had drawn an increasingly tough line on clergy abuse. Bergoglio insisted that accused priests face trial, and imposed a thorough screening process in an attempt to weed out future problems, Rubin said…..

Grassi was well known in Buenos Aires for persuading celebrities to donate to his “Happy Children” foundation, which ran orphanages and social outreach programs. Before he was convicted, Grassi praised Bergoglio for “never abandoning him.” Now he’s free on appeal, thanks in part to a church filing on his behalf.

Sasso, meanwhile, enjoys prison furloughs after serving half of a 17-year sentence for abusing five girls.

Sasso was assigned to the soup kitchen, at a chapel where his bedroom shared the only bathroom, after living in a home for wayward priests where he had been sent after accusations of pedophilia were raised against him in remote San Juan province.

“The bathroom had two doors. The girls would come in through the outside door, and the priest would bring them into his bedroom through the other, sexually abusing the girls,” Moreau said. “These were really poor people, who were there for free meals while their parents worked. They found an enormous amount of child pornography in his computer, semen, condoms.” It was a medical priest and a nun who discovered that Sasso abused 25 girls aged 3 to 16, but when they informed church officials, they were told to “remain patient,” and nothing was done, Moreau said.

Eventually, they sought higher authorities and the case was taken up by the criminal courts, but the mid-level officials who covered it up still have their positions, while the priest and nun were forced to work elsewhere, the lawyer said….

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/clergy-abuse-victims-call-on-pope-francis-to-open-files-on-argentinas-pedophile-priests/2013/03/19/ed810cb2-90c6-11e2-9173-7f87cda73b49_story.html

Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law
By Rama Lakshmi Tuesday, March 19, 2013

NEW DELHI — The Indian Parliament’s lower house passed a landmark law Tuesday that sets tougher penalties for rapists and for police officers who refuse to file a woman’s complaint of rape, as well as criminalizing offenses such as stalking, voyeurism and acid attacks.

The amendments to existing law incorporate some of the sweeping changes that were demanded after the fatal gang rape of a young paramedical student in New Delhi in December, an incident that sparked a nationwide outcry against the lack of safety for women.

Despite the unprecedented protests that galvanized tens of thousands of Indians, the number of incidents of sexual assault has not diminished.

As lawmakers discussed the new law in Parliament on Tuesday, a British tourist fractured her leg when she jumped from the balcony of her hotel room in Agra, the city of the Taj Mahal, to escape being molested by the hotel owner, police said….

A provision requiring government approval for the trial of police officers, officials, politicians and judges on rape charges also has been lifted.

For the first time, the law criminalizes stalking and voyeurism, acts of sexual harassment that have long been grouped under the benign euphemism “love-teasing.” Hereafter, rapes that occur during religious and caste riots also will be treated as cases of aggravated sexual assault.

The law does not, however, address contentious issues such as marital rape or the legal impunity afforded to Indian military officers. Nor does it include a provision to prohibit politicians charged with rape from running for office….

Some activists working to end the trafficking of minors said the law is a watered-down version of what was initially proposed.

“Under the new law, trafficking of a minor is a crime only if rape or sexual exploitation occurs,” said Bhuwan Ribhu, a children’s rights activist….
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/british-tourist-jumps-from-indian-hotel-balcony-to-escape-sexual-assault-police-say/2013/03/19/1c25919c-9094-11e2-9173-7f87cda73b49_story.html 

South Africa cardinal says pedophilia not a crime, Swiss cyclist gang-raped in India

March 17, 2013 Comments Off on South Africa cardinal says pedophilia not a crime, Swiss cyclist gang-raped in India

South Africa cardinal says pedophilia not a crime  Reuters 3/16/13
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – A South African cardinal who helped elect Pope Francis this week has told the BBC pedophilia is an illness and not a crime.

Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier, the Catholic Archbishop of Durban, told BBC Radio 5 on Saturday that pedophilia was a “disorder” that needed to be treated.

“From my experience, pedophilia is actually an illness. It’s not a criminal condition, it’s an illness,” he said.

Napier said he knew of at least two priests who became pedophiles after they were abused as children.

“Now don’t tell me that those people are criminally responsible like somebody who chooses to do something like that. I don’t think you can really take the position and say that person deserves to be punished. He was himself damaged.”

The Catholic Church has had its image deeply tarnished by a widespread child sex abuse scandal.

Napier was one of the 115 cardinals in the Vatican conclave that elected Pope Francis on Wednesday, the BBC reported. http://news.yahoo.com/south-africa-cardinal-says-pedophilia-not-crime-155418854.html

South African cardinal says paedophilia is ‘not a criminal condition’

Durban’s Archbishop Wilfrid Fox Napier says those abused as children who become paedophiles ‘have psychological disorder’
guardian.co.uk, Saturday 16 March 2013

A South African cardinal who helped elect Pope Francis has described paedophilia as a psychological illness and not “a criminal condition”.

The Catholic Archbishop of Durban, Wilfrid Fox Napier, said that people who were abused as children and became paedophiles were not criminally responsible for their actions in the same way as somebody “who chooses to do something like that”.

Cardinal Napier, who was among the 115 cardinals in the conclave at the Vatican that elected Pope Francis earlier this week, called paedophilia a “psychological disorder”.

He said: “What do you do with disorders? You have got to try and put them right. If I as a normal being choose to break the law knowing that I am breaking the law, then I think I need to be punished …

“From my experience, paedophilia is actually an illness, it is not a criminal condition, it is an illness.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/16/south-african-cardinal-paedophilia-crime

Swiss cyclist gang-raped in India
Gang attacked couple and then gang-raped woman as they camped overnight in a Madhya Pradesh forest

Staff and agencies
guardian.co.uk, Saturday 16 March 2013

A Swiss cyclist was gang-raped after she and her husband were attacked while camping in India, police said.

Authorities detained and questioned 13 men in connection with the attack, which occurred on Friday as the couple camped out in a forest in Madhya Pradesh state after cycling from the temple town of Orchha, local police officer RK Gurjar said.

The men beat the couple and gang-raped the 39-year old woman, he said. They also stole the couple’s mobile phone, a laptop computer and 10,000 rupees (£123)….

India has experienced outrage and widespread protests against attacks on women since December’s fatal gang-rape of a young woman on a bus in New Delhi, the capital. The crime horrified Indians and set off nationwide protests about India’s treatment of women, spurring the government to hurry through a new package of laws…. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/16/swiss-cyclist-gang-raped-india

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