Pulitzer winner Walter Robinson on Catholic Church's paedophile cover-ups

By Daphné Gastaldi

Walter Robinson is an investigative journalist with The Boston Globe who in 2002 exposed a vast paedophile scandal in the American Catholic Church, for which he won the Pulitzer Prize in 2003 and inspired the 2015 movie Spotlight. As the French Catholic Church becomes ever more engulfed by revelations of paedophile abuse and a system of protection for the priests involved, Robinson, in this interview with Daphné Gastaldi, details what he uncovered in the US within a system that precisely mirrors the scandal in France.

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Walter Robinson has worked at The Boston Globe for more than 30 years, occupying various posts including that of head of the daily’s investigative unit, The Spotlight Team. In early 2002, Robinson and his colleagues exposed a massive scandal surrounding the Catholic Church and notably the Archdiocese of Boston, centred on active paedophile priests whose crimes were covered up by their hierarchy. The priests would be transferred to other parishes or even abroad, where they could continue their sexual abuse. The investigation by Robinson and his team won the Globe and its journalists the 2003 Pulitzer Prize, among others, and last year the investigation was the subject of the movie Spotlight (in which Robinson is played by Michael Keaton). He is now the paper's editor-at-large.