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Australia: Catholic Church pays legal costs for serial child abusers

November 16, 2012

THE Catholic Church has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on legal fees to defend priests and brothers who have already been tried and convicted of serious sexual assaults against children in their care.

A Fairfax Media investigation has revealed that at least two Catholic orders have continued to fund the legal defences of some of their religious members as they went to trial for the second, third and even fourth time for the sexual abuse of children.

This includes the funding of multiple appeals, hiring barristers who charge thousands of dollars a day, and hiring private investigators.

In some cases the result has been that criminal prosecutions and the victims are dragged through the courts for years.

SMH

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