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AG Shapiro Slams Church, Bishop Zubik And State's 'Weak' Laws In Wake Of Grand Jury Report

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro talked to counterparts in 19 other states asking about the grand jury report that focused on sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church.

The attorney general had some harsh words for the church and what he called "weak" laws in the state of Pennsylvania.

"There should be no statute of limitations when it comes to the sexual abuse of a little child. Right now, we are limited in that timeframe. About 40 other states have already done away with the statute of limitations. We should do that," Shapiro said.

josh shapiro cbs this morning
(Photo Credit: CBS This Morning)

Shapiro pulled no punches when he sat down at the table in New York City on "CBS This Morning," including comments about the bishop of the Pittsburgh Diocese.

"Two responses to Bishop Zubik. Number one, he's not telling the truth -- and the church's own documents prove that. And second…child rape in 1970 is the same as child rape in 2018," Shapiro said.

But, he did not stop there and went on to say there was a sophisticated cover-up of what happened.

"The priests would go, the bishops would go and lie to the parishioners, lie to law enforcement, lie to the public, but then document all of the abuse in secret archives that they would share often times with the Vatican. There are specific examples where the Vatican knew of this abuse and they were involved in the cover-up," Shapiro said.

KDKA's Andy Sheehan Reports:

After the grand jury report, Bishop Zubik was quoted as saying, "The church of Pittsburgh today is not the church that's described in the grand jury report."

Shapiro says that's simply not good enough.

"The idea that the bishop would simply say that this was a long time ago, is demonstrably false and it is absolutely the wrong response to this," Shapiro said.

In the two weeks since the findings were released, 733 people have called the attorney general's hotline, many with additional claims of abuse. Still, Shapiro contends the church looked the other way.

Meghan Schiller's Report:

"Statements made by bishops in Pennsylvania, by Cardinal Wuerl specifically, to deny this does further the cover-up. It covers up the cover-up," Shapiro said.

Bishop Zubik had no comment on Sharpiro's "CBS This Morning" interview.

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