Is it right to abuse innocent priests in order to prevent the abuse of children?

There can be no doubt that false accusations of sexual offences against priests is a widespread phenomenon. Fr Z has drawn attention to a 10-page declaration recently submitted to the Los Angeles County Superior Court by the attorney Donald Steier, who has been involved in the investigation of over 100 cases of alleged clerical sexual misconduct, who has arrived at the conclusion that many of these accusations are fraudulent. Mr Steier says that “one retired FBI agent who worked with me to investigate many claims in the clergy cases told me, in his opinion, about one half of the claims made in the clergy cases were either entirely false or so greatly exaggerated that the truth would not have supported a prosecutable claim for childhood sexual abuse” [original emphasis].