7 Percent of Australian Catholic Priests Accused of Abuse

Officials investigating the abuse of children at institutions across Australia have revealed that 7 percent of priests in Australia's Catholic Church were accused of sexually abusing children over the past several decades.

The statistics were released Monday during the opening address of a hearing of Australia's Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. The royal commission is Australia's highest form of inquiry and has been investigating since 2013 how the Catholic Church and other institutions responded to the sexual abuse of children over decades.

The commission has previously heard harrowing testimony from scores of people who suffered abuse at the hands of clergy. But the full extent of the problem was never clear until Monday, when the commission released the statistics it has gathered.



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