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Pope cuts 3 cardinals from cabinet, 2 implicated in scandal

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has removed three cardinals from his informal cabinet, two of whom have been implicated in the Catholic Church’s sex abuse and coverup scandal.

The Vatican said Wednesday that Francis in October had written to Chilean Cardinal Javier Errazuriz, Australian Cardinal George Pell and Congolese Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya thanking them for their five years of service on the so-called Group of Nine.

Erraazuriz has been accused by Chilean abuse survivors of having covered up for predator priests while he was archbishop of Santiago, a charge he denied. Pell took leave from his job as the Vatican’s economy minister to stand trial in his native Australia on historic charges of sex abuse, which he denies.

Francis appointed the Group of Nine in 2013 to help reform the Vatican.

The Associated Press