The public prosecutor in Munich will investigate 42 cases of alleged abuse within the German Roman Catholic Church. The criminal investigation follows a report by a German law firm about widespread abuse within the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising.
According to a spokesperson for the prosecutor, the law firm submitted 41 cases in August last year and another in November last year. “It deals exclusively with matters of church employees who are still alive.”
If, based on these investigations, it appears that church leaders may have also acted criminally, the prosecutor will also investigate this, a spokesperson said. The law firm also requested more information that led to the investigation.
On Thursday, it was announced that there were hundreds of child abuse cases between 1945 and 2019 in the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising.
Several church leaders in Germany at the time, including Pope emeritus Benedictus, are accused of having held up their hand over lower-ranking associates. Pope Emeritus was Archbishop of the diocese from 1977 to 1982.