No perjury charge for priest

Sept. 12, 2012 at 9:03 PM
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SAN JOSE, Calif., Sept. 12 (UPI) -- A California prosecutor said Wednesday he cannot file a perjury charge against a Catholic priest beaten by a man who said the priest molested him.

Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen said he believes the Rev. Jerold Lindner lied under oath, the San Jose Mercury News reported. But Rosen said Lindner's testimony was not material to the charge against Lynch.

"We believe Lindner lied," Rosen said. "But perjury is not merely lying under oath. It is a highly technical criminal offense that requires several elements to be proved. Citizens entrust us to prepare criminal complaints only for factually sound and legal reasons. We cannot do that in this matter."

Adults who say they were molested by Lindner, now 68, as children have urged his prosecution. The statute of limitations makes sexual abuse charges impossible.

Will Lynch, who assaulted Lindner at a Jesuit retirement home in 2010, said the priest raped him when he was 7 and molested his 4-year-old brother. Lynch was acquitted of the attack in July.

During the trial, Lindner denied molesting Lynch and would not answer other questions. Lynch and his attorney, Pat Harris, met with Rosen Wednesday afternoon.

Harris said circumstantial evidence supports Lynch's story, including $4 million in damages paid by the Jesuit order.

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