Sex Abuse Victims Seek International Criminal Court Charges Against Former SF Archbishop

levada1.jpg
Cardinal William Levada
Victims of clergy sex abuse have named a top Vatican official with roots in San Francisco as part of a small group of Catholic Church officials who should be investigated for crimes against humanity in a formal complaint lodged this week with the International Criminal Court.

The complaint, filed Monday at the Hague, asserts that Cardinal William Levada is one of four high-ranking clerics who bear "greatest responsibility for ongoing, widespread and systematic sexual violence" perpetrated by priests, according to a statement from the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP).

Levada became archbishop of San Francisco in 1995. In 2005 he was appointed Prefect of the Doctrine of the Congregation of the Faith by Pope Benedict XVI. The prefect is officially responsible for handling priest abuse cases worldwide.

The pope is also named in the complaint, along with Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican Secretary of State, and Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the Dean of the College of Cardinals. The complaint was filed jointly by SNAP and the Center for Constitutional Rights.

It is rare for the ICC to launch an investigation into crimes against humanity based on suggestions from complainants, and a lawyer for the church described the request for prosecution as a "ludicrous publicity stunt and a misuse of international judicial processes," according to the Associated Press.

California SNAP representative Tim Lennon said Levada was included because of actions he has allegedly taken to cover up abuse scandals since he has served at the Vatican. "He's in the second or third position in the hierarchy of the church," Lennon said. "He's the last stop for complaints about the clergy."

San Francisco residents might also recall that Levada came under heavy criticism for his role in suppressing clergy abuse cases during his time in San Francisco, as former SF Weekly staff writer Ron Russell reported in a series of stories.

Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF

My Voice Nation Help
7 comments
Sort: Newest | Oldest
Dreamk10000
Dreamk10000

As a survivor of clergy abuse by. Monsignour Albert Berube while attending St. Anrhony's Elementary School in New Bedford, Massachusetts in the 1960's I can tell you this is what needs to happen. Accountability from everyone who covered to & said and did nothing

Patrick O'Malley
Patrick O'Malley

This is just more proof of what everyone knows - the Catholic church has a world-wide, consistent, organized approach to concealing rampant child sex abuse by Catholic priests. In places where its investigated by outsiders - like Philly, Ireland, etc, they found horrific crimes.

It's organized crime, and should be investigated and prosecuted using RICO statutes in the US, and should also be prosecuted internationally, like Amnesty International is trying to do by prosecuting the vatican.

Unlike the mafia, it's not the job of the church to commit these crimes, but there's no question whatsoever that they committed thousands of child sex crimes in the United States alone, and covered it up in criminal fashion, (although they knew the laws well enough to outlast thestatute of limitations).

This makes them an organized crime institution, and they should be investigated and prosecuted like the mafia.

The fact that they continue to ignore or fight the victims, and the fact that they continue to lie and mislead their sheepish congregation makes them a horrible church. God made the laws so simple, yet they don't follow them, and their congregation can't figure that out.

Harvey King
Harvey King

The Church is in moral and financial ruin because of those horny, sexually repressed priests! Show me a man who is not even allowed to whack off and I'll show you a man who is going to sooner or later go bonkers! When I was just a lad my best friend wanted be to join the Church. When I found out masturbation was a sin and prohibited and you were supposed to go in a little box and confess to the good father if you even shook your weenie more than three times after taking a leak I said "I don't think so dude!" (or something like that!). Needless to say I've been flogging the mule ever since and it's one of the things that made me the great man that I am today! Furthermore I'll put my basic moral character up against those sexually molesting priests any day! 

Dreamk10000
Dreamk10000

There are two different issues here. Horney priests is one thing but pedophelia is another.

mightymite
mightymite

Not  to diminish the serious sin of the RCC but Please examine the Jehovah's Witnesses who go door to door and come on our property.   Jehovah's Witnesses pedophiles. Many court documents and news events prove that Jehovah's Witnesses require two witnesses when a child comes forward with allegations of molestation within the congregation. Such allegations have customarily been treated as sins instead of crimes and are only reported to authorities when it is required to do so by law, (which varies by state).  It has also been shown that child molesters within the organization usually have not been identified to the congregation members or the public at large. These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to pedophiles.  The Watchtower corporation has paid out millions in settlement money already. -- Danny Haszard abuse victim FMI dannyhaszard(dot)com 

mightymite
mightymite

Not  to diminish the serious sin of the RCC but Please examine the Jehovah's Witnesses who go door to door and come on our property.   Jehovah's Witnesses pedophiles. Many court documents and news events prove that Jehovah's Witnesses require two witnesses when a child comes forward with allegations of molestation within the congregation. Such allegations have customarily been treated as sins instead of crimes and are only reported to authorities when it is required to do so by law, (which varies by state).  It has also been shown that child molesters within the organization usually have not been identified to the congregation members or the public at large. These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to pedophiles.  The Watchtower corporation has paid out millions in settlement money already. -- Danny Haszard abuse victim FMI www.dannyhaszard.com  

Jehovah Witness
Jehovah Witness

Not  to diminish the serious sin of the RCC but Please examine the Jehovah's Witnesses who go door to door and come on our property.   Jehovah's Witnesses pedophiles. Many court documents and news events prove that Jehovah's Witnesses require two witnesses when a child comes forward with allegations of molestation within the congregation. Such allegations have customarily been treated as sins instead of crimes and are only reported to authorities when it is required to do so by law, (which varies by state).  It has also been shown that child molesters within the organization usually have not been identified to the congregation members or the public at large. These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to pedophiles.  The Watchtower corporation has paid out millions in settlement money already. -- Danny Haszard abuse victim FMI dannyhaszard(dot)com 

Now Trending

Around The Web

From the Vault

 

©2014 SF Weekly, LP, All rights reserved.
Loading...