Sept. 6 (UPI) -- The New York Attorney General's office on Thursday subpoenaed the state's archdiocese and all seven dioceses in a probe of how the Catholic Church handled allegations of sexual abuse.
Attorney General Barbara Underwood announced her office's Charities Bureau launched a civil investigation into how church entities reviewed and possibly covered up allegations of abuse of children. The probe comes less than a month after a grand jury accused six Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania of systematically covering up the sexual abuse of more than 1,000 children by hundreds of clergymen over the past seven decades.
"The Pennsylvania grand jury report shined a light on incredibly disturbing and depraved acts by Catholic clergy, assisted by a culture of secrecy and cover ups in the dioceses," Underwood said. "Victims in New York deserve to be heard as well -- and we are going to do everything in our power to bring them the justice they deserve."
Underwood's office also announced the creation of a clergy abuse hotline and online complaint form for victims or people with information to contact investigators.
Meanwhile, in Nebraska, the attorney general has called on three Catholic dioceses to provide 40 years of documents on sexual abuse allegations to investigators.