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Thursday, March 07, 2013

Twelve Cardinals blacklisted by sexual abuse victims group

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A group representing survivors of sexual abuse by priests named a "Dirty Dozen" list of cardinals it said would be the worst candidates for pope based on their handling of child sex abuse claims or their public comments about the cases.

The list names three U.S. Roman Catholic cardinals and nine from other countries.

SNAP, the Survivors' Network of those Abused by Priests, said as it released the list Wednesday that its accusations were based on media reports, legal filings and victims' statements.

A representative for one of the cardinals on list dismissed the group. The remaining cardinals or their representatives couldn't be immediately reached by CNN for comment Wednesday.

"I'm not going to respond to this group which has little to no credibility," said Joseph Zwelling, a spokesman for Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York.

When asked about the SNAP list, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, a spokesman for the Vatican, told CNN: "We believe it is not up to SNAP to decide who comes to conclave and who is chosen. ... cardinals can decide themselves without asking SNAP for advice."

Lombardi and another Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Thomas Rosica, read the SNAP press release together, Rosica said. Lombardi declined to comment further.

The two other U.S. cardinals on the list are Sean O'Malley of Boston and Donald Wuerl of Washington, D.C., the group said.

A spokeswoman for Wuerl declined to comment.

The others listed are Leonardo Sandri of Argentina, George Pell of Australia, Marc Ouellet of Canada, Dominik Duka or the Czech Republic, Peter Turkson of Ghana, Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga of Honduras, Tarcisio Bertone and Angelo Scola of Italy, and Norberto Rivera Carrera of Mexico, the group said.

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