Cardinal Mahony deposed shortly before Vatican trip

Cardinal Roger Mahony Celebrates Christmas Mass At The Cathedral Of Our Lady Of The Angels

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Cardinal Roger Mahony leads Christmas mass at The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels December 25, 2010 in Los Angeles, California.

Cardinal Roger Mahony was questioned for more than three hours Saturday about his handling of allegations of sexual abuse by priests that took place while he was Archbishop of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Times reports

The Times quotes the lawyer who questioned Mahony, attorney Anthony De Marco, who represents a man suing the L.A. Archdiocese for abuse that allegedly took place in 1987, when a priest, Nicholas Aguilar Rivera, visited his parish. 

De Marco also said he spoke to the former Archbishop about several other cases of alleged abuse.

The deposition is the first that Mahony has taken part in since the church released documents on cases of alleged abuse by clergy members. It took place just hours before Mahony headed to the Vatican to vote on a new pope. 

Rivera is alleged to have abused 26 children while in the United States, according to the Times. Records show he was warned to leave the country by a member of Mahony's staff.

Related: Priest file records: Nicholas Aguilar Rivera 

De Marco told the Times he could not comment on the questioning due to a judge's order, though he said he hopes to make the transcript public.

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