Head of child-abuse-protection foundation resigns following scandal

Marek Lisiński, chairman of the “Nie lękajcie się” (“Don’t be afraid”) foundation which helps victims of sexual abuses by priests, resigned following allegations of conning one of the victims into lending him a large sum of money.

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“I have failed the trust of all victims of the clergy who approached me asking for help as well as all the people working in the Board of the Foundation who did not know about my actions which compromised good name and credibility of the Foundation,” Mr Lisiński’s statement reads.”

I risked a loss of good name of the people who in goodwill cooperated with the Foundation in many projects focused on protecting children from sexual abuse of the clergy... .”

“I ask not to associate my actions with the activities of the Foundation Don’t Be Afraid,” he adds. “Everything I did, I did on my own behalf.”

His resignation comes as a result of a journalistic investigation which revealed him conning one of the victims supported by the foundation into lending him PLN 30,000 (EUR 7,000).

On Thursday, the “Gazeta Wyborcza” daily reported that after one of the victims received compensation from the Church in autumn last year, Marek Lisiński approached her and asked her to lend him money for pancreatic cancer surgery.

The victim grew suspicious after Mr Lisiński appeared in a TV interview in the days following the alleged surgery. He reportedly could not provide any credible proof of the treatment.

In reaction to allegations of financial fraud, Mr Lisiński resigned from his position at a recent board meeting.