British panel concludes Catholic Church failed abuse victims

A British inquiry has concluded that children could have been saved from sexual abuse had the Archdiocese of Birmingham not been so determined to protect its reputation.

The report by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse said Thursday that the church "repeatedly failed" to alert police to allegations and that while 130 allegations had been made against 78 individuals, the true scale of the offenses is likely to be higher.

The inquiry criticized the current leader of Roman Catholics in England and Wales, Cardinal Vincent Nichols.

The report says Nichols, who was archbishop of Birmingham between 2000 and 2009, defended the "reputation of the Church rather than fully acknowledge the possibility of its shortcomings."