Religious Order Priests are associated with a particular Catholic Order (i.e. Franciscans) and can move more freely from Diocese to Diocese and Jurisdiction to Jurisdiction. This jurisdictional mobility allows Religious Order priests to likely be the most unreported group of clerical sexual abusers in existence. Often a particular Diocese claims to not have authority or information regarding a Religious Order priest and the distant superiors for that Religious Order never face scrutiny from local law enforcement. Because Religious Orders like the Franciscans operate throughout the United States and sometimes the world, with the stroke of a pen a Provincial like those charged today can aid in the flight of a perpetrator priest fleeing a jurisdiction in which he committed crimes upon children.
The actions of the prosecutor are to be commended and the intelligence of the Grand Jury to seek accountability for those responsible for exposing local children to perpetrators imported from other jurisdictions is laudable.