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Pope Francis says will not respond to allegations of abuse cover-up

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Pope Francis said on Sunday he would not respond to explosive accusations by a former top Vatican official that the pontiff had covered up sexual abuse, saying dismissively that the document containing the allegations “speaks for itself”.

Francis, talking to reporters aboard the plane returning to Rome from Dublin, said he would “not say one word” on the 11-page document, in which the former official says Francis should resign. The pontiff said journalists should read the document carefully and decide for themselves about its credibility.

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The official accused the pope of having known of allegations of sex abuse by a prominent U.S. cardinal for years. The document by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the former Vatican ambassador to Washington, was an unprecedented broadside against the pope by a Church insider.

“I read that statement this morning. I read it and I will say sincerely that I must say this, to you (the reporter) and all of you who are interested: read the document carefully and judge it for yourselves,” he said.

“I will not say one word on this. I think the statement speaks for itself and you have sufficient journalistic capacity to reach your own conclusions,” he said.

Vigano gave the bombshell statement to conservative Roman Catholic media outlets during the pope’s visit to Ireland, which was dominated by the Church’s sexual abuse in that country and others around the world.

He accused a long list of current and past Vatican and U.S. Church officials of covering up the case of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the retired archbishop of Washington D.C.

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McCarrick, 88, resigned last month in disgrace and was stripped of his title after allegations that he had abused a minor nearly 50 years ago and also forced adult male seminarians to share his bed.

Reporting By Philip Pullella; Editing by Daniel Wallis

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‘Bulletproof from a pardon’: Fox News analyst says judge in Stone case just made things tough for Trump

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In the wake of Roger Stone's sentencing of 3.5 years in prison this Thursday, Fox News legal analyst Andrew Napolitano posited that U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson's choice to go along with Attorney General Bill Barr's sentencing recommendation could have been an effort to pardon-proof the sentence from President Trump.

"[Jackson's] trying to make this bulletproof from a pardon," Napolitano said. "Because she went along exactly with what [Barr] requested."

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Adam Schiff sends signal that a Roger Stone pardon would be another impeachable offense

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Rep. Adam Schiff suggested that a presidential pardon for Roger Stone would be an impeachable offense.

Judge Amy Berman Jackson sentenced the longtime Republican operative to 40 months in prison, saying Stone had lied to Congress and threatened a witness to cover up possible wrongdoing by President Donald Trump -- and Schiff sent a warning against a pardon.

"Roger Stone was found guilty of lying to Congress and threatening a witness," Schiff tweeted.

Schiff, who led the impeachment inquiry and trial, agreed with Jackson -- whose language echoed the lawmaker's "corrupt scheme and cover-up" indictment during the Senate trial.

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E. Jean Carroll blames Trump’s attacks on her character for firing from Elle magazine following sexual assault allegation

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"Tell me again how sexual assault claims ruin men?"

Women's rights advocates came to the defense of longtime columnist E. Jean Carroll Wednesday after she revealed she was fired from Elle magazine months after coming forward with sexual assault allegations against President Donald Trump.

Carroll claimed her dismissal from her job as an advice columnist for the magazine, where she worked for more than two decades, came as the result of Trump's attacks on her following the accusation.

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