Lawyers release list of accused Illinois Catholic clergy

CHICAGO - Lawyers released a new list of Catholic priests accused of child abuse in Illinois includes hundreds of more names then were previously released by the dioceses. The lawyers said they did it to raise awareness.

The list, called The Anderson Report, includes names, pictures, and histories.

One example out of the Diocese of Belleville is Father Robert J. Chlopecki. According to the report, Chlopecki was accused of being involved in a sex ring with another priest on the listed, who reportedly died.

Chlopecki is said to have served parishes in Herin, Fairview Heights, and Caseyville in the 1970s, Royalton and Mound City in the 1980s, and Nashville, Illinois in the 1990s.

The Anderson Report says the Belleville Diocese removed Chlopecki from the ministry at some point when he was living in Marissa, but lawyers don't know where he is now -- his status as a priest --or his access to children.

Attorney Jeff Anderson, who put the list together, talked this afternoon in Chicago about it.

“We've chosen to reveal this information because the Catholic bishops and the religious orders who are in charge and have this information, and hold it secret, have chosen to conceal it," Anderson said.

Anderson says the list is just the beginning. He says it includes 203 additional names from what the Catholic Church acknowledges for Illinois.

Read the report in its entirety here

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