The Netherlands’ most senior Catholic told a court hearing on Tuesday sexual abuse ‘did not exist’ as an issue for the Dutch church until the early 1990s, AP reports.
Speaking at a hearing into the case of a man who said he was drugged and raped by his priest two decades ago, cardinal Adrianus Simonis said the Dutch Catholic hierarchy only began dealing with the issue after reports of widespread abuse began emerging from the US in the 1990s.
After a scandal broke last year, nearly 2,000 abuse claims have been made to a special commission set up to investigate.
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