Pope Benedict Booted Priests Over Sexual Abuse Claims

Newly released Vatican documents reveal 400 priests defrocked from 2011-2012

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Pope Benedict XVI defrocked almost 400 priests between 2011 and 2012 because of allegations that they had molested children, according to a  newly disclosed Vatican document.

The document, which was prepared from data the Vatican collected for the Holy See’s defense at a United Nations hearing this week, was obtained by the Associated Press and reported Friday. It’s the first data ever disclosed about the number of priests defrocked amid sexual abuse allegations, as the Vatican has previously revealed  only the number of alleged cases of sexual abuse. Benedict XVI stepped aside as Pope last year.

The 400 priests defrocked represent roughly 1 in 1,000 of all the priests in the world, since there are roughly 412,000 priests as of 2013, according to Georgetown‘s Center for Applied Research of the Apostolate.