PITTSBURGH, Dec. 22 (UPI) -- The Roman Catholic bishop of Pittsburgh denies he covered for abusive priests by destroying their records while he was in Green Bay, Wis.
Bishop David Zubik called allegations by Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests "totally without substance," the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported. SNAP asked for a court order Tuesday to prevent the Green Bay diocese from destroying personnel records and asked federal prosecutors in Wisconsin to investigate whether Zubik and other Catholic officials in Green Bay obstructed investigations into abuse.
Zubik headed the Green Bay diocese from 2003 to 2007 and then moved to Pittsburgh.
"There was never an order issued by me -- nor anyone else -- to destroy documents or evidence contained in the files of priests accused of abuse while I served as bishop of Green Bay," he said in a statement. "To the contrary, it had been diocesan practice in Green Bay not to destroy documents in priest files -- even after a priest had died -- if there was litigation involving that priest or any pending claims. I reinforced that practice by having it formally written into the diocesan records retention policy in 2007."