Illinois AG to meet with church leaders about Pennsylvania report

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CHICAGO --Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan wants to review Catholic church documents that have to do with priests involved in sexual abuse.

This is more fallout from that grand jury report in Pennsylvania that found widespread abuse spanning decades. Madigan says the report names seven priests with ties to Illinois.

She says if bishops in Illinois do not cooperate, she will launch investigations.

The Chicago Archdiocese has released a statement promising to work with Madigan, and notes that since 2002, it has reported all abuse allegations to civil authorities.

So far, there's no word on when these meetings may take place.

Read the full statement from Madigan below:

“The Catholic Church has a moral obligation to provide its parishioners and the public a complete and accurate accounting of all sexually inappropriate behavior involving priests in Illinois.

“We have reviewed the Pennsylvania grand jury report, which identifies at least seven priests with connections to Illinois. The Chicago Archdiocese has agreed to meet with me. I plan to reach out to the other dioceses in Illinois to have the same conversation and expect the bishops will agree and cooperate fully. If not, I will work with states attorneys and law enforcement throughout Illinois to investigate.”

Read the full statement from the Archdiocese of Chicago below:

"We have been contacted by the Illinois Attorney General and look forward to discussing our policies and procedures related to misconduct issues with her and her office. We have worked cooperatively with the Cook County and Lake County State’s Attorneys for many years. Since 2002, the Archdiocese of Chicago has reported all abuse allegations to the proper civil authorities – DCFS (in cases involving children) and the appropriate State’s Attorney.

"We also met with members of office of the Cook County State Attorney and they reviewed our clergy files in 1992, 2002 and 2015. Since 2006, our website has included the names of clergy who have substantiated claims of abuse against them and in 2014 we posted our files relating to those priests with substantiated allegations."

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