By WILLS ROBINSON, Daily Mail
Pope Benedict XVI removed nearly 400 priests in two years for molesting children, it has been revealed.
The shocking statistics for 2011-12 represent the first time the Vatican has revealed how many priests who have been defrocked.
Prior to that, the Catholic Church only revealed the number of alleged sexual abuse cases it had received.
The revelations come after centuries of tradition which saw the Vatican dealing with cases internally, without the involvement of police.
The document was prepared from data the Vatican had been collecting to help the Holy See defend itself before a UN committee in Geneva, Switzerland, this week.
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s UN ambassador in Geneva, referred to just one of the damning statistics during eight hours of criticism and questioning from the UN human rights committee.
The rise in the number of defrockings is in stark contrast to 2009, when only 171 priests were removed following allegations.
Changes were brought in by Pope Benedict, then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, after suggesting bishops around the world were not following church law, while officials used ways to keep the accusations from surfacing.