Catholic Bishop Indicted in Sex Abuse Scandal

October 14, 2011

A Catholic bishop has been indicted for the first time in the U.S., more than 25 years after the sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests became a national scandal.

Robert Finn, bishop of Kansas City, Mo., and his diocese were indicted by a county grand jury today for failing to report and covering up suspected child abuse after a priest was accused of taking lewd photos of young girls.  The priest, the Rev. Shawn Ratigan, was arrested in May and indicted by a federal grand jury.

Bishop Finn and the lawyers representing the diocese pleaded not guilty to the one-count misdemeanor charge.  “We will meet these announcements with a steady resolve and a vigorous defense,” Bishop Finn said in a statement.

FRONTLINE has been following the larger sexual abuse scandal in recent years and its long-lasting impacts on a Boston-area family, and on a small Native American community in Alaska.

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