Abuse victims' leader calls pope's planned meeting a public relations ploy

CHICAGO (AP) — The head of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests says Pope Francis's plan to meet with abuse victims looks like "a public relations ploy."

SNAP President Barbara Blaine says the pope already has all the information he needs to remove priests who abuse minors and bishops who cover it up.

Francis's upcoming meeting with a half-dozen victims, announced yesterday, is being organized by Cardinal Sean O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston. O'Malley was instrumental in setting up a meeting six years ago between clergy sex-abuse victims and Francis' predecessor, Pope BenedicI. Blaine says that meeting didn't lead to meaningful action.

Pope Francis told reporters yesterday that abuse of children is an "ugly" crime that betrays God. He also revealed that three bishops are currently under investigation by the Vatican for abuse-related reasons, though it wasn't clear if they were accused of committing abuse or covering it up.

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