clearn.png
Wednesday October 21st, 2020 1:04AM

Trial delayed for French priest accused of abusing 75 boys

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

LYON, France (AP) — A former French priest accused of sexually abusing around 75 Boy Scouts went on trial Monday, but the proceedings were delayed for at least a day because of a strike by lawyers.

The case is France’s worst clergy abuse drama to reach court so far, and its repercussions reached all the way to the Vatican.

“I have heard the suffering of these people, which I'm guilty of causing. I hope that this trial can unfold as quickly as possible,” Bernard Preynat told the court after the judge announced the trial would be delayed until Tuesday.

Preynat admitted in the 1990s to abusing boys, but was only removed from the priesthood last year. The church defrocked him in July, after French Cardinal Philippe Barbarin was convicted of covering up for Preynat’s actions.

Several other church officials were also accused of failing to alert police or prosecutors of his actions, including a senior Vatican official, Cardinal Luis Ladaria. The Vatican shielded Ladaria from trial, invoking his immunity as an official of a sovereign state.

Preynat, now 74, appeared in court Monday in Lyon on charges of sexual assault of 10 minors between 1986 and 1991. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted. He’s also accused of abusing dozens of others in the 1970s and 1980s, but those alleged incidents happened too long ago to prosecute.

The judge delayed the hearing because of a strike by lawyers angry over President Emmanuel Macron's planned overhaul of the French pension system.

Several of the victims' lawyers appeared in court despite the strike, and seemed confident that the trial would resume quickly. The French government is meeting legal sector representatives Monday for negotiations on the pension reform.

Preynat's trial comes amid new tensions in the Vatican, as retired Pope Benedict XVI insists in a new book on the “necessity" of priestly celibacy just as Pope Francis is weighing whether to ordain married men to address the Catholic priest shortage.

___

Angela Charlton in Paris contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP World News, AP Business
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Trial delayed for French priest accused of abusing 75 boys
A former French priest accused of sexually abusing some 75 Boy Scouts went on trial Monday
6:06AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Video: Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown
Online videos purport to show Iranian police and security forces firing both tear gas and live rounds to disperse demonstrators who are protesting against the Islamic Republic's initial denial that it shot down a Ukrainian jetliner
5:52AM ( 23 minutes ago )
Biden picks up Colin Allred as 10th Black Caucus endorser
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has picked up the endorsement of Texas Rep. Colin Allred, the 10th Congressional Black Caucus member to back the former vice president’s 2020 bid
5:50AM ( 25 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
French summit aims to boost counterterror fight in W. Africa
France is preparing its military to better target Islamic extremists in a West African region that has seen a surge of deadly violence
3:54AM ( 2 hours ago )
Australian is 20th fatality in New Zealand volcano eruption
An Australian man who was injured in a volcanic eruption in New Zealand more than a month ago has died, becoming the 20th victim of the disaster
1:53AM ( 4 hours ago )
Pope Benedict XVI breaks silence to reaffirm priest celibacy
Retired Pope Benedict XVI has broken his silence to reaffirm the “necessity" of priestly celibacy
1:44AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP World News
Video: Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown
Online videos purport to show Iranian police and security forces firing both tear gas and live rounds to disperse demonstrators who are protesting against the Islamic Republic's initial denial that it shot down a Ukrainian jetliner
5:52AM ( 23 minutes ago )
Biden picks up Colin Allred as 10th Black Caucus endorser
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has picked up the endorsement of Texas Rep. Colin Allred, the 10th Congressional Black Caucus member to back the former vice president’s 2020 bid
5:50AM ( 25 minutes ago )
Lava gushes from volcano near Manila; tens of thousands flee
Red-hot lava has gushed out of a volcano near the Philippine capital, as thousands of people fled the area through heavy ash
5:47AM ( 28 minutes ago )
Global stocks rise ahead of signing of US-China trade pact
Global stocks are rising as investors shrug off weaker-than-expected American jobs data and look ahead to the signing of an interim U.S.-China trade deal
5:47AM ( 28 minutes ago )
Spain's new coalition government Cabinet members take oaths
Twenty-two Cabinet ministers have taken their oaths  to join Spain's new coalition government, a first in a country dominated until recently by two main parties taking turns in power
5:31AM ( 44 minutes ago )