- The Washington Times - Monday, April 8, 2013

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has removed three priests from the ministry who have been charged and convicted of child endangerment and abuse.

The abuse led to one victim’s suicide, after he came forward with allegations and was dismissed by church leaders, The Associated Press reported.

The church’s decision to remove the priests followed a lengthy investigation and grand jury finding, AP said. The Revs. Joseph Gallagher and Mark Gaspar had already been suspended for abuse and were charged in 2011, but Sunday’s archdiocese board decision makes the removal from office permanent. Also removed: Monsignor Richard Powers, AP said.

“Our only problem is that it took so long,” Marci Hamilton, the attorney for the family of victim Daniel Neill, said Sunday, in the AP report. Neill killed himself in 2009, just months after he was told his abuse claims couldn’t be sustantiated.

The three can still appeal their removal to the Vatican, AP said.