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Dallas police search Catholic diocese and parish in sexual abuse investigation

Police search Catholic diocese in sex abuse investigation

Dallas — Investigators with the Dallas Police Department have executed a number of warrants across the city — at the Catholic Diocese of Dallas, a storage location of the headquarters and a parish, CBS Dallas / Fort Worth reports. Squad cars and a Dallas police box truck were outside the Diocese for hours.

The warrants were related to allegations of clergy abuse against Oak Cliff priest Edmundo Paredes and other suspects.

"In addition to the allegations against Mr. Paredes detectives are investigating at least five additional allegations of child abuse against other suspects. These investigations stem from additional allegations made after the case against Mr. Paredes became public," Dallas Maj. Max Geron said at a press conference Wednesday morning.

"In furtherance of these investigations today we obtained and executed multiple search warrants to collect any data or documentation of previous reports or records of abuse that may be held by the Dallas Catholic Diocese," he said.

Geron said Dallas detectives are "working to complete a through investigation into each allegation — independent of any other entity — to ensure that each victim has a voice within the legal system."

After news was released about the searches, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) released a statement that said, in part, "We applaud Texas law enforcement officials for raiding the 'secret archives' of the Catholic Diocese of Dallas. We are glad that police and prosecutors are taking the issue of clergy abuse in Texas seriously and are not just relying on the promises of church officials."

"We hope that this raid today sheds more light on the clergy abuse scandal as it relates to the Diocese of Dallas and will uncover the full truth of who knew what, when they knew it, and what steps church officials took in response to allegations of sexual abuse," the SNAP statement said.

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