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Chicago Archdiocese Removes Ex-Children’s Home Chief Accused of Sexual Abuse

(Peter Griffin / Griffin /
CHICAGO (AP) — The Archdiocese of Chicago has removed from ministry the former longtime superintendent of its Maryville Academy for troubled children while it investigates allegations he sexual abused minors.

The archdiocese says the allegations date to 2002-03 when the Rev. John Smyth was completing a 33-year-tenure as superintendent of the academy in suburban Des Plaines. It says the Archdiocesan Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review received the allegations, and they've been reported to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and the Cook County State's Attorney.

Smyth has resided on the grounds of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines since retiring in 2014. A message seeking comment was left for him there Friday. The archdiocese says he will reside elsewhere while the allegations are investigated.

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