The former vicar of clergy for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles testified under a grant of immunity last week before a federal grand jury investigating the church's role in sexual abuse by priests, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Msgr. Richard Loomis, whose responsibilities as a high-ranking aide to Cardinal Roger Mahony included overseeing sexual-abuse cases against fellow priests, testified Dec. 16 under "use immunity," meaning his testimony cannot be used against him in a criminal prosecution, said the source, who asked not to be named because grand juries are confidential.
A "use immunity" agreement would not protect Loomis from being prosecuted based on statements made outside his grand jury testimony.
The source said other members of the church hierarchy "are being called, or in line to come" before the grand jury. "It's not [Loomis] alone," the source said.
Archdiocese attorney J. Michael Hennigan said he was not aware of any other grand jury subpoenas of church officials. He said he has been informed that Mahony is not a target of the inquiry. Law enforcement sources have told The Times that the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles had launched a grand jury investigation in connection with Mahony's response to the molestation of children by priests in the archdiocese.