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LA Priests Among Those Allowed To Work Abroad After Sexual Abuse Accusations

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The entrance to the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, the headquarters for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles. (Damian Dovarganes/AP)
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The Catholic Church let at least 51 priests who were credibly accused of sexual abuse move to different countries to continue working as clergy, according to an investigation from ProPublica released Friday. Of those, a handful were accused in Los Angeles prior to going elsewhere.

Among the Los Angeles-based offenders is a man ProPublica reporters describe as, “One of the most notorious cases of an accused priest moving across international borders.”

Rev. Nicolas Aguilar Rivera was transferred to L.A. after being accused of sexual abuse in Tehuácan, Mexico. Once here, Rivera allegedly molested 10 boys. Rather than strip him of his priesthood or report him to the police, however, church leaders transferred him to Mexico once again.

The news outet’s report comes from an analysis of their own database, which gathered lists of credibly accused clergy and made them public and searchable.

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