A US appeals court has ruled that the Vatican can be sued for the sex abuse committed by US priests.
The Vatican had tried to block a class action lawsuit alleging that it orchestrated a cover-up of sexual abuse by clergy with the argument that it was protected by laws granting sovereign states immunity from most US civil proceedings.
Central to the case is a 1962 Vatican mandate unearthed in 2003 which outlined a policy of “strictest” secrecy regarding allegations of sexual abuse by clergy and threatened those who spoke out with excommunication.
A federal appeals court ruled that the case brought by three Kentucky men can proceed because exceptions in the law allow the Vatican to be held liable for the actions of church employees acting within the scope of their employment in the United States.
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