After the publication of the study on sexual abuse by Catholic clergy, the public prosecutor's office in Hildesheim has started investigations in two cases. This was communicated by spokeswoman Christina Pannek.
According to the report, the diocese of Hildesheim has handed over documents on six accused priests who are still alive to the public prosecutor's office. According to Pannek, a so-called preliminary investigation was opened against one of them, but it was discontinued due to lack of initial suspicion. Three other proceedings have been discontinued because of the statute of limitations, the spokeswoman told the Catholic News Agency (KNA). The public prosecutor's office gave no further details on the two ongoing investigations.
As part of the study on sexual abuse presented by the German bishops at the end of September, there were references in church files from 1946 to 2014 to 3 nationwide.677 victims of sexual assault and to about 1.670 accused priests, deacons and religious have been found.
The Hildesheim diocese recorded at least 153 victims and 46 accused priests in recent decades. Of the alleged perpetrators, only ten are still alive, according to the diocese. Criminal charges were filed against four even before the study was published.
Diocese plans reappraisal with experts
Hildesheim's new bishop Heiner Wilmer had recently repeatedly spoken out in favor of a "relentless clarification of the cases of sexual abuse" and had shown himself willing to cooperate.
After new abuse allegations against the deceased former bishop Heinrich Maria Janssen, he wants to seek advice again from the Munich Institute for Practical Research and Project Consulting (IPP), as was revealed on Tuesday in response to a KNA inquiry. The researchers were supposed to help put together an external group of experts to look into the matter, it was said.