We use our own and third party cookies to improve your user experience; by continuing to browse, we understand that you accept their use. You can get more information on our cookies policy.

Rome Reports

You are using an outdated browser

In order to deliver the greatest experience to our visitors we use cutting edge web development techniques that require a modern browser. To view this page please use Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer 11 or greater

Munich prosecutor's office drops case against Pope Benedict XVI for alleged cover-up

The Munich Public Prosecutor's Office has closed the investigation against Pope Benedict XVI for allegedly covering up at least four cases of pedophilia during his time as archbishop in Germany, between 1977 and 1982.

The court ruled that there is no "sufficient suspicion of criminal activity" and that, if there had been, the statute of limitations would have expired.

The investigators based their decision on the abuse report published in January 2022, prepared by a law firm at the request of the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising. The chief prosecutor said this document is of "great importance" for the social debate, but notes that it is "not very productive" in terms of criminal law. 

Pope Benedict XVI, after learning of the accusations, commissioned a group of professionals. They examined over 8,000 pages of meetings and documents of Joseph Ratzinger, and concluded that they saw no clear evidence of a possible cover-up of abusers.