French cardinal’s case dismissed in sex abuse-related probe

French cardinal’s case dismissed in sex abuse-related probe

In this April 3, 2016 file photo, French Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, Archbishop of Lyon, leads a mass for migrants in the Saint-Jean Cathedral, in Lyon, central France. A French prosecutor on Monday Aug.1, 2016 threw out the case of the prominent cardinal who was under investigation for alleged failures to report on suspected pedophilia by a priest under his watch. (Credit: AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani, File)

A French prosecutor has thrown out the case of Cardinal Philippe Barbarin of Lyon, who was under investigation for alleged failure to report suspected pedophilia in the 1980s by a priest under his watch.

PARIS — A French prosecutor has thrown out the case of a prominent cardinal who was under investigation for alleged failure to report suspected pedophilia by a priest under his watch.

Lyon prosecutor Marc Cimamonti told The Associated Press on Monday that there wasn’t sufficient evidence against Cardinal Philippe Barbarin and the statute of limitations had expired for some of the allegations.

Barbarin had been questioned in June by investigators in the case of Father Bernard Preynat, a priest charged with sexual aggression and rape of a minor and accused of abusing boy scouts in the 1980s. Barbarin said he was convinced the priest reformed in 2007-2008 when they met.

Preynat retired in August 2015 after being relieved of his duties by the diocese. He was charged in January with sexual aggression of minors for a person in a position of authority.

In May, Pope Francis expressed support for Barbarin, one of the highest-ranking prelates in the French Catholic Church, saying he shouldn’t resign.

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