Monsignor Lynn to Serve Up to Six Years for Protecting Pedophile Priest

Monsignor William Lynn has become the highest-ranking Catholic church official in the U.S. to be sentenced to prison in the global sexual abuse scandal.

A Philadelphia judge has handed down a sentence of three to six years to Monsignor William Lynn for his role in covering up the actions of a priest who was sexually abusing children. Lynn, who was convicted on charges of child endangerment on the same day Jerry Sandusky was found guilty of repeated sexual abuse, becomes the highest-ranking official in the U.S. Catholic church to be jailed in a clerical abuse scandal that spans the globe.

The guilty verdict was based on evidence that he had transferred a child-molesting priest to a different parish instead of reporting the crime or punishing the priest.  Lynn finally apologized to the victim at his hearing and said he "did his best," while his supporters continue to claim he is a "scapegoat."

Judge M. Teresa Sarmina, however, pointed out that Lynn had failed to not only protect this one child, but many other boys whom the priest came in contact with over the years. 

"You knew full well what was right, Monsignor Lynn, but you chose wrong," she said, according to published reports. 

Lynn was facing a sentence that ranged from probation to seven years, and his attorneys said they will appeal, claiming it was "unbelievable" that he could be sentenced to prison for not protecting a boy he  "never saw, never met and never knew was in danger." 


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