Published January 01, 2014
Philadelphia prosecutors have blasted the city's archdiocese for posting at least part of the bail for a monsignor whose conviction for crimes related to sex abuse was recently overturned.
Monsignor William Lynn's lawyers said Tuesday that he had posted 10 percent of the $250,000 bail and surrendered his passport, both necessary conditions for him to be released while awaiting an appeal by prosecutors to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams accused the archdiocese of posting the entire $25,000 at a hastily called news conference Tuesday night. A spokesman would only say that the archdiocese "assisted" in posting bail for Lynn, but declined to specify an amount when contacted by The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Williams said the archdiocese's action "sends the wrong message and protected pedophiles," and called it "business as usual."
Lynn, the former archdiocesan secretary for Philadelphia responsible for the supervision of priests, was the first U.S. church official ever convicted for his handling of abuse claims. He began serving a three-to-six-year prison sentence in June 2012. However, a Pennsylvania Superior Court judge ruled Monday that the child-endangerment law Lynn was convicted of violating did not apply to him.
Officials at the state prison in Waymart, in northeastern Pennsylvania, have not yet gotten a court order to release Lynn. The superintendent told FOX 29 that Lynn would probably be released in the next few days.
Lynn would be subject to electronic monitoring and weekly reporting. Prosecutors opposed granting Lynn bail, claiming that he was a flight risk.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.