Explosive letter claims Pope Francis helped cover up Cardinal McCarrick sex abuse

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The Vatican’s former ambassador to the United States has written an explosive letter claiming that Pope Francis knew about sex abuse allegations against disgraced ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick for years, but chose to cover up the charges and elevate his position within the church before accepting his resignation last month.

The extraordinary 11-page letter, which came as Francis began the second day of a visit to Ireland that has been dominated by the abuse scandal, was published on Sunday by The National Catholic Register and LifeSiteNews, and is attributed to Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò.

NBC News could not confirm the letter’s authenticity or its claims. The letter offered no evidence but did say documents backing up his version of events were in the Vatican archives.

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