TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2016
Jehovah's Witnesses instructed to hide cases of child abuse
In 1997 they ordered to create a file of all the pederastas that has not yet come to light
In recent years they have moderated the discourse of concealment but continue to omit the directive to denounce
Baptisms of members of the Jehovah's Witnesses in Palau Sant Jordi in 2006.
GUILLEM SÁNCHEZ / BARCELONA
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2016 - 21:39 CET
The letters written by the Watchtower New York to branches of Jehovah's Witnesses around the world gather instructions that the dome of this religious organization , with more than 8 million followers in the world has for decades to avoid that cases of child sexual abuse in your community come to light.
The newspaper has recovered these missives which destroy - led ordered those responsible (the "elders") of each of the 1,400 Spanish congregations dependent Christians Jehovah 's Witnesses,the branch in Spain. Several extestigos endorse that were obeyed in their congregations and a world leader on this organization as the American Barbara Anderson has confirmed to this newspaper that its content is a simple translation into Castilian of the original writings from the United States.
"In the early 1990s knew they had a serious problem with pedophilia , " Anderson, who then worked as a researcher for the magazine 'Awake' ( 'Awake'), which is printed for all devotees explains. The most important thing in these missives is what "they say"emphasizes Anderson. Something as simple as "warn the police" does not appear in any of them. His refusal to report these crimes to the authorities is something that just berate them the government commission of Australia . A policy of concealment that fits complaints filed in Spain by Miguel Garcia or Israel Perez . Also with the story of Piris Noelia, a woman located by this newspaper, has reported that she was raped by eight years and then threatened into silence.
BURY THE MEMORIES
In the letter sent in 1992 to the leaders of each congregation "digging up the memories" of abuse victims with "a quiet life" it is advised. If , however, these "throw whimpers anguish" (citing biblical scripture from Psalm 55:17), elders "can help" to "bury bad experiences."
Original letter of the 23 of March of 1992 that was sent translated in Castilian to the old ones of Spain.
1994 shows a clarification in which it is dropped that exist "laws that force to report of the abuses to minors". However, instead of indicating that this is what should be done in congregations what the elders are commanded is "immediately available " with the "Department of Legal Affairs of the center".
In 1995 he insists that when an accusation of pedophilia appears, the elderly "should immediately" with the "Legal Department".
CREATE A CASE FILE
In 1997 the organization wants to know all cases of abuses that exist.To this end, he orders the elders to send a "report" in which, in addition to the personal data of pederast and victim, questions such as "How long has the person committed the sin?" s) victim (s)? "," what degree came? ". Such information" should be sent to the central "inside" an envelope color cane. "Such information" should not be made available to anyone outside the Matter, "he remarked.
In 2002 the letter introduces a relevant nuance. "Our position is this: Elders take care of sin and secular authorities, of crime. In order not to obstruct justice, the elders should not prevent or hinder any secular investigation of dishonest abuse of minors." However, the instruction on how to deal with a case of child abuse is always:"Contact with the Department of Legal Affairs". This body is responsible for providing "timely guidance in order to report the crime to the competent authorities".
Letter showing that an internal pedophile archive was being built.
In 1998, it was clarified that these reports on cases within each congregation should be sent to the center even if the pederast had committed the crime "before being baptized" as a witness.
In 2006 and 2010 it again urges elders to "inform the Department of Legal Affairs" to any case of child sexual abuse.
DESTROY THE LETTERS
In 2012 it ordered that all letters with instructions on this crime (previously cited in this notice and for the years 1995, 1997, 1998, 2006 and 2010) should "be removed from the permanent archive of letters on procedures and destroy them ." It is added that "no one should keep originals or copies of any such letters". The content of this new letter clarifies for the first time explicitly that "under current Spanish legislation , " the elderly who attend an allegation of child abuse "may be forced" to make it known "by the authorities, as appropriate". The main order, however, remains unchanged: "Call the Department of Legal Affairs immediately."
The last letter, dated August 1, 2016 four months ago -he admits that "in some jurisdictions" the person who has knowledge of a crime of abuse "is obliged to inform the authorities." The only specific order on what To do is-again-to contact the plant.
The public commission in Australia has warned that hiding these abuses endangers children and found that only the Body of Eldersdome -the United States has "authority" to change these instructions because "not tolerated" That no branch has another way of acting.
Anderson explains that he has been collecting letters to different countries, such as Canada or the United Kingdom. "They are always the same," he says. However, as emphasized by an old man who remains in confession and requires anonymity, the "pattern" is always treat each case "a sin" and not "as a crime." And "of course" not reporting "to the competent authorities".
The Witnesses deny the concealment but have not denounced a case
The spokesman of Jehovah's Witnesses in Spain, Aníbal Matos, has not denied the existence of these letters with instructions on how to handle cases of pederasty, but he wanted to emphasize that the policy of the organization is to "urge" the affected family "to Denounce "this offense. The institution will take the initiative when the victim "is a child who is in a situation of defenselessness," he stressed. The latter, however, in Spain has not occurred to date. On the existence of a file with the names of all the sexual aggressors, Matos has emphasized that "it does not exist as such" and to call it "leads to misunderstandings". The letters addressed to the elders were intended to "help where it was possible to help," not to hide abuses within congregations, he insisted.