Victims of sexual abuse by two priests at a Catholic institute in the Argentine province of Mendoza (west) will present a report in February with harsh accusations against the Catholic Church before the United Nations, lawyer Lucas Lecour told Efe on Monday.
The report that questions ecclesiastical action in the case of the Antonio Próvolo Institute in Mendoza will be delivered to the United Nations Committee against Torture and the Committee on the Rights of the Child, which in 2014 issued a series of recommendations for the Church to collaborate in the Ordinary Justice investigations into cases of sexual abuse.
VICTIMS ACKNOWLEDGE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH OF COVERAGE
The lawyer anticipated that the report will detail “how in the Próvolo case all these recommendations that were made in 2014 have not been fulfilled: the authors are still being covered up, the collaboration is still denied to Justice, compensation and reparation are still denied adequate to the victims. ”
Both United Nations committees had recommended to the Vatican that they collaborate with Justice and avoid covering up and transferring priests accused of sexual abuse, “which is the practice that the Catholic Church has generally had in these cases,” Lecour said.
The lawyer stressed that the document will seek to demonstrate that despite the recommendations of the United Nations, “the Vatican State continues to act in the same way it had been doing before.”
HARD JUDICIAL CONDEMNATION FOR SEXUAL ABUSE
The Argentine Justice sentenced last November to sentences of 42 and 45 years in prison to the priests Nicolás Corradi and Horacio Corbacho, respectively; and 18 to gardener Armando Gomez for sexual abuse of students with hearing impairment at the Próvolo Institute.
The three people were found guilty of various sexual offenses, with various aggravations for being responsible for minors, in a total of 25 cases occurred in the institute.
The investigation of the case began at the end of 2016, when a hypoacoustic alumnus – currently 19 years old – of the institute of the Mendoza town of Luján de Cuyo and closed since December of that year, reported having suffered abuse in the center by Corbacho When I was 5 years old.
The altar boy Jorge Bordón was also convicted, who confessed in 2018 during an abbreviated trial that was the author of eleven abuses and will have to serve ten years in prison.
The Próvolo Institute has a headquarters in Verona (Italy), where in 2009 a group of 67 alumni denounced abuses by several priests, among which was Corradi, a native of the Italian city, according to testimonies such as Ana Franchetto, who claimed that the condemned priest “ruined his life.”
In 2014, a delegation of former deaf students of the Italian center met with Pope Francis in the Vatican to deliver a letter with the names of the 25 presumably pedophile priests in that place and alerting the presence of Corradi and other religious in Argentina.
MEETING OF VICTIMS OF SEXUAL ABUSE IN ROME
On February 14, four of the victims of the Próvolo Institute of Mendoza and two lawyers will travel to Geneva, where they will present the report to the United Nations committees, and then depart to Rome, where they will participate in a meeting of victims of sexual abuse perpetrated by ecclesiastics throughout the world.
“We want this to generate sufficient incidence in the Vatican, as well as in Argentina and the rest of the world, that these cases cannot be covered up anymore and that the obligation of the Church is to repair the victims,” Lecour said.
The lawyer considered that “they cannot continue acting as they are acting, trying to save the coffers of the Church at the expense of the victims, trying to save the institution at the cost of the criminal investigations that are being carried out and that there is really zero tolerance for ecclesiastical sexual abuse. “