Report: Top Catholic official testifies

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 24 (UPI) -- A senior Catholic official in Los Angeles has testified under immunity before a grand jury investigating sex abuse, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.

A source told the newspaper Monsignor Richard Loomis, the former vicar of clergy for the archdiocese of Los Angeles, was granted use immunity. That means his testimony before a federal grand jury cannot be used to prosecute him.


Loomis' responsibilities as vicar of clergy included overseeing cases involving priests accused of molesting children.

J. Michael Hennigan, a lawyer for the archdiocese, told the newspaper he has been told Cardinal Roger Mahony is not a target of the investigation. He said he is not aware of other officials who have received subpoenas.

Loomis gave a deposition in a civil case this year, saying Mahony told him in 2000 not to tell police about charges of sexual misconduct against a priest. The civil case involved the Rev. Michael Baker, who has been sentenced to 10 years in prison and defrocked.

Mahony has publicly apologized for his delay in stripping Baker of his priestly functions.

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