“This decision by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith was rendered after an impartial and rigorous factual investigation conducted by former federal prosecutor John O’Donnell, partner at Herbert Smith Freehills, as well as the investigative firm founded by former FBI Director Louis Freeh,” Hayden said. “Both are former law enforcement officials with proven experience and impeccable integrity and the result of their investigation should leave no doubt.”
Garabedian said the investigations were “subjective and biased because the investigators were controlled by and paid for by the Catholic Church,” the Associated Press reports. He said the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is “in the business of continuing the secrecy of clergy sexual abuse by hiding the truth.”
In October 2019, just before the first abuse allegation was made public, Bishop DiMarzio had finished heading a Vatican-ordered investigation into accusations of cover-up against Bishop Richard Malone, who was then the Bishop of Buffalo.
Garabedien has said the allegation against Bishop DiMarzio taints his investigation into Bishop Malone and said law enforcement should carry out a new investigation in Buffalo. The attorney has represented several dozen clients alleging abuse against clergy of the Diocese of Buffalo.
In his own comments, Bishop DiMarzio said, “I remain focused on leading the Diocese of Brooklyn as we are emerging from the darkness of the Coronavirus pandemic. I ask for your prayers as I continue to fight against the lawsuits stemming from these two allegations, and as I now look forward to clearing my name in the New Jersey state courts.”
Bishop DiMarzio was consecrated an auxiliary bishop of Newark in 1996. He served as bishop of Camden from 1999 until 2003, when he was installed as the Bishop of Brooklyn. His time in Newark overlaps with Theodore McCarrick, who served as Archbishop of Newark from 1986 to 2000.
In June 2018 the New York archdiocese announced that an abuse allegation against McCarrick was “credible and substantiated.” The announcement led to McCarrick’s resignation from the College of Cardinals, a Vatican investigation into McCarrick’s activities and behavior, and major debates about the Church’s handling of sex abuse committed by Catholic bishops.
Several Vos estis investigations have proceeded against U.S. bishops. In March, the Albany diocese said Bishop emeritus Howard Hubbard would be investigated for alleged abuse of an 11-year-old boy in 1977, in a claim that also involves a lawsuit against the bishop and the diocese. Bishop Hubbard has said he is innocent of the allegations.
Bishop John Brungardt of Dodge City is under investigation by Church authorities and local law enforcement for alleged abuse of a minor, a charge he denies. Bishop Michael Hoeppner of Crookston resigned in April after facing two Vos estis investigations for alleged mishandling of cases of priests accused of sexual misconduct.