The Los Angeles Times and New York Times reported yesterday that documents filed this month by the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles in a civil action disclose more clearly than before that now-retired Cardinal Roger Mahony and his advisor on sex abuse cases, Msgr. Thomas J. Curry, worked to keep evidence of child molestation by three priests from law enforcement officials. According to the LA Times:
Fifteen years before the clergy sex abuse scandal came to light, Archbishop Roger M. Mahony and a top advisor plotted to conceal child molestation by priests from law enforcement, including keeping them out of California to avoid prosecution, according to internal Catholic church records released Monday....
[M]emos written in 1986 and 1987 by Mahony and Msgr. Thomas J. Curry ... offer the strongest evidence yet of a concerted effort by officials in the nation's largest Catholic diocese to shield abusers from police. The newly released records, which the archdiocese fought for years to keep secret, reveal in church leaders' own words a desire to keep authorities from discovering that children were being molested.
In the confidential letters, filed this month as evidence in a civil court case, Curry proposed strategies to prevent police from investigating three priests who had admitted to church officials that they abused young boys. Curry suggested to Mahony that they prevent them from seeing therapists who might alert authorities and that they give the priests out-of-state assignments to avoid criminal investigators.[Thanks to Scott Mange for the lead.]