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Bolivian Jesuits apologize for alleged abuse by late priest

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LA PAZ, Bolivia — Bolivia’s Jesuit congregation apologized Tuesday and introduced an investigation right into a late Spanish priest who allegedly abused a number of minors in Bolivia relationship again to the Nineteen Eighties.

“We apologize for the ache this has induced,” mentioned the Rev. Bernardo Mercado, head of the Catholic spiritual order referred to as La Compañía de Jesús. He mentioned the congregation has launched a probe that seeks to deliver justice for the victims and referred to as the state of affairs an “embarrassment.”

The case of Jesuit priest Alfonso Pedrajas Moreno got here to mild over the weekend in a report by the Spanish newspaper El País. It printed excerpts of the priest’s dairy, the place he allegedly admitted to having abused at the least 85 kids whereas he was a instructor in Bolivia till 2009 when he died.

Bolivian officers haven’t launched the variety of victims nor the dates by which the alleged abuse befell. However earlier this week Bolivia’s high prosecutor Wilfredo Chávez mentioned on Twitter that he would search info from the Spanish consulate on the case, so it may be investigated in Bolivia.

The congregation is investigating two instances, one which concluded in April and decided the “veracity” of that allegation, and a second one which is ongoing.

Audalia Zurita, a lawyer for the Jesuit congregation, mentioned Tuesday at a press convention that they’ve requested El País for a duplicate of Pedrajas Moreno’s dairy, and that every one info gathered of their probe will probably be shared with the Lawyer Normal’s Workplace.

This isn’t the primary grievance in opposition to monks for abusing minors in Bolivia, however few instances have been totally investigated and dropped at justice.

In 2015, a rural priest was sentenced to fifteen years in jail for the abuse of 12 minors. A short while later he dedicated suicide in jail. In 2009 a priest was sentenced to 22 years in jail for comparable crimes.

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