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Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) released a statement following the release of the report of the 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro:

 “The kinds of abuses that took place over decades should be the subject of continuing scrutiny, review and transparency, and that's what this grand jury report has begun to achieve. It never should have taken this long, and Church leadership bears the responsibility for the abuse and the cover-up. I hope the Vatican will carefully review the report and determine what actions can be taken to hold fully accountable (under canon law) any priest, bishop or cardinal who abused a child or failed to act to stop the abuse or take action against the abuser.

Anyone who has abused a child or has been involved in covering it up must be held fully accountable. These actions are violations of criminal law and the consequences and the penalties should fit the crime. We must also make sure that we are implementing systems that will prevent this type of abuse and cover-up in the future. My legislation, the Speak Up Act, would strengthen standards relating to mandatory reporting and make it clear that suspected child abuse or neglect must be reported directly to the appropriate state authorities. Also, I have confidence that Attorney General Shapiro will examine what, if any, additional prosecutorial actions can be taken in this ongoing investigation.”