Friday, December 6, 2002

Indicting a diocese?

Prosecutors have asked for a special meeting of a grand jury Dec. 13 to consider indicting the Roman Catholic Diocese of Manchester for failing to protect children from abusive priests, the AP has learned.While priests have been convicted on sex abuse charges, no diocese ever has been indicted in the United States.Sources familiar with the case, speaking on condition of anonymity, said an indictment could come as soon as that day. The investigative grand jury in Manchester has been hearing evidence against the church for several months.But an indictment could be averted by a settlement, according to Charles Putnam, a former state prosecutor who said deals are common as investigations near the end.

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