Thursday, May 23, 2013

Court judgement expected after raid on Cardinal's home in 2010

The Supreme Court focused on Tuesday for the fourth time on documents seized by the Brussels magistrate Wim De Troy in June 2010 from Archbishop's Palace of Mechelen and from offices and the private residence of Cardinal Danneels. The highest court in the country must decide if the Court of Indictment in Brussels had reason to exclude these documents from the file because the searches were not legal.

Searches conducted on 24 June 2010 were within the framework of Operation Chalice, the investigation by the Brussels judge, Wim De Troy of evidence for sexual abuse of children by clergy and the possible cover-up of these cases within the Catholic Church. Three differently constituted Court of Indictments decided one after the other that these searches were initially irregular, then they were perfectly legal and finally they were illegal. In their last judgment of November 29, 2011, the Court of Indictment found that the documents seized during the searches should be excluded from the file. The Court of Cassation quashed the decision because it was inadequate but the judgment declaring the raids irregular has not been finally broken. The Court of Indictment again decided in December 2012 that these parts should be excluded from file, but according to several plaintiffs, the Court is wrong and it must be overturned when the public prosecutor at the Court of Cassation takes the opposite view. The Court will deliver its judgment on May 28