Victims of sexual abuse in the French Catholic Church have demanded action following the publication of a new sentencing investigation.
Since 1950, clerics in the organization have sexually abused about 216,000 children, according to the report, mostly boys. The abusers are seeking compensation after the revelations. François Devaux, who founded the association of former victims La Parole Libérée (Free Speech), said there had been a “betrayal of faith, betrayal of morals, betrayal of children”. He called for compensation for the victims.
“You have to pay for all these crimes,” he said twice on stage at a report launch event.
The French Church has previously announced a plan for “financial contributions” for victims, starting next year. A group of victims’ associations said they expected clear and concrete answers from the Church in light of the investigation.
According to the report there were at least 2,900-3,200 abusers. He said the number of abused children in France could rise to 330,000, taking into account abuses committed by secular members of the Church, such as teachers in Catholic schools, and also called for victims to be compensated.
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