“Up to now, no specific research has been done on this”

View of Dresden © Philipp Dase (shutterstock)

The "Sachsische Zeitung" has reopened another earlier abuse case in the Dresden-Meissen diocese. It is about a priest who died in 2015 and is accused of sexual violence against his nephews and altar boys.

This is what the newspaper reported on Wednesday, citing people involved in the case. The diocese of Osnabruck, where the priest had spent his retirement since 1994, had already filed criminal charges against him in 2012 at the request of the diocese of Dresden-Meissen, as well as initiating an ecclesiastical preliminary investigation after a victim came forward.

According to the newspaper, it is unclear whether there are other victims. The church leadership has "so far also not specifically investigated".

Deeds are barred by the statute of limitations

The diocese of Dresden-Meissen explained in response to a question: "We also see the case G. as the subject of further efforts to come to terms with the past. However, there are currently no indications for the necessity of a legal reopening of the case."At the time, the Osnabruck public prosecutor's office had discontinued the proceedings six months after the charges were filed.

An abuse could not be excluded, however, the acts are barred by the statute of limitations, quotes the "Sachsische Zeitung" from the justification.

The accused was active from 1964 to 1992 as a clergyman in Aue, Zittau, Kipsdorf, Dippoldiswalde, Hainichen and Neugersdorf. He retired at the age of 59 and moved from Saxony to Werlte-Wieste in Emsland in 1994, where he lived until his death. Also the ecclesiastical investigations apparently brought only conditional knowledge.

According to the "Sachsische Zeitung," the final report of the Osnabruck diocese states "whether abuse would be criminally attributable according to general church law or whether in favor of G. The question of whether there were grounds for mitigating punishment could not be clarified because of the priest's silence.".

Diocese turns to those affected

The Saxon diocese again called on victims of sexual abuse to come forward. Also one collects from the current processing of abuse cases from the 1960s in the catholic municipality Heidenau further experiences. The "Saxon Newspaper" had also this old case in mid-February rolled up again and details made public.

In addition, the diocese pointed out that the (arch)dioceses of Berlin, Dresden-Meissen, Gorlitz and the Catholic military chaplaincy have recently launched a call for tenders for a joint advisory council for those affected and for the establishment of an independent commission to deal with the case.

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Christina Cherry
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