Belgian Abuse Commission Shuts Down

BRUSSELS, Belgium, JUNE 28, 2010 ( After a raid that was denounced by Benedict XVI and resulted in the confiscation of confidential files, a commission to investigate sexual abuse by the clergy is shutting down.

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Some 500 confidential files in Leuven, Belgium, were taken last Thursday by law enforcement officials from the office of Peter Adriaensses, president of the commission for the treatment of sexual abuses.

The commission was created by the bishops in 2000. It was formed by independent professionals to respond to allegations of sexual abuse in the Church.

According to a communiqué from the commission, it is now impossible to work, since all the files have been taken.

Moreover, the statement lamented, “there is no longer a base for operating, that is, the indispensable trust between [officials of] justice and the commission, needed to ensure the trust between the victims and the commission.”

The commission members affirmed that “there has always been an effort to ensure all the rights of the victims, specifically through the convention with justice [officials] published on the Web page.”

Without this agreement, they stated, “475 citizens would have never had the confidence to give us their information.”

Commission members announced that they will give their resignations to Bishop Guy Harpigny of Tournai on July 1.

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